Dec 18, 2012

Grant to Provide Clean Drinking Water at Thailand Schools

As many as 2,000 people in remote villages lacking public utilities will benefit

The Prem Rawat Foundation Betterment of Life Thailand Drinking Water Filters

The Prem Rawat Foundation (TPRF) has made a grant of $15,000 to provide clean drinking water to an estimated 1,880 students and teachers plus nearby villages through eight schools in remote provinces of Thailand.

The funds went to the Drinking Water for Schoolchildren Project run by Thailand's Betterment of Life Foundation (BoLF) to purchase tanks and filtration systems selected to best meet the needs of each school. Once they are installed, BoLF will maintain these systems indefinitely.

This is the third grant TPRF has awarded to Bangkok-based BoLF foundation. About a year ago, TPRF funded the purchase of emergency supplies of food and drinking water in Thailand's northern provinces after unseasonably heavy rains resulted in widespread flooding.

BoLF Coordinator Sang-arun Limwongtaworn, who will directly oversee the project, says villagers in remote areas in Thailand lack access to public utilities, particularly water, and must use ground wells and streams without effective ways to store the water.

"This is particularly so in the schools," she says, "which rely mainly on rainwater for the children's use. Accordingly, they suffer from lack of water during drought periods. They have to often bring some water from their homes." This water, Limwongtaworn says, is often visibly contaminated with herbicides and insecticides and frequently tests positive for E. coli bacteria.

Past BoLF projects such as this, BoLF Director Chansate said, have demonstrated the difference that grants of this nature make not only to the students and teachers, but also to villagers who live near the school.