This project was funded from general donations to Ingomar Living Waters. This is not a typical water project for Ingomar Living Waters. Normally, Ingomar Living Waters invests in Stage 1 water projects where other than local dirty natural water resources like seasonal ponds, a local stream or river, or water runoff, there is no water distribution system of any sort in place. But in San Roque, they do have some infrastructure for pumping river water and filling jerry cans and even treating the water. It’s just not sufficient and people are still suffering from illnesses from dirty water and expensive water access. So Ingomar Living Waters is working with Water Mission on a Stage 2 project to implement a better and more affordable (to those in need) source of water…a filtration and distribution system for dirty water pumped from the Ucayali River.
San Roque is an incredibly isolated community, deep in the Amazon Forest along the Ucayali River. Depending on the time of year and speed of the river, it takes 10-12 hours by boat to get from Water Mission’s office in Iquitos, to San Roque. The need for safe water is great in this community. It is the largest city in the area and so serves as a central hub supporting many much smaller river communities made up of primarily indigenous communities. The community gets water directly from the river.
Throughout the year this water is brown with mud/silt and highly contaminated. One of the local teachers started a small business distributing water throughout the community, but it’s unsafe and untreated. This is a very large project that would be a source of hope in this isolated and often neglected area. Our Peru Country Director, Juan Simon said that, “Nobody comes out to support these people, the government spends money elsewhere. If we don’t do it, nobody else will.” In San Roque, the river is highly turbid and local wells have very levels of iron. There is a lake about a half mile away or so, which has slightly better water quality. However, the water is still unsafe and not accessible to most members of the community.
Water Mission is implementing a pumping, treatment, and distribution system in San Roque. Total cost will be $180,000 of which Ingomar Living Waters is contributing $25,000. The water will be pumped from the river where to a treatment system in the middle of the community. The treatment system will serve as the central access point. Key lines will be run to some distribution points in the community like the community center, school, and clinic. Those will provide easy access to clean water for everyone in the community. Over time the distribution lines can be extended.