Rotary Club Leaders Review San Mateo’s Water Filter Project

Tuesday, April 30th, 2013

Submitted by Ann Kuffner

Safe-Drinking-Water-for-San-MateoDuring the year 2012 the Rotary Club supported a local project to improve the quality of drinking water in San Mateo, since prior articles explain San Mateo Area’s waters as contaminated.

Ann Kuffner, who has extensively researched water treatment options for the area, contacted Doctor Marcelo Coyi Gynecologist and Obstetrics at the Belize Medical Associates Clinic in Belize City. Dr. Coyi is also an active Rotary Club member who sponsored a grant to obtain 2,000 Sawyer water filters for mainland Belize. Upon request from Kuffner, Dr. Coyi donated 200 of the Sawyer filters to the San Mateo area.

With the entire project under the watchful eye of Rotary Club, filters were given to residents that required it the most. San Pedro health inspector Lisa Tillett, has been very instrumental in assisting the project and in educating residents about proper filtration methods.

On April 13th, Dr. Coyi revisited the San Mateo community, to evaluate the project status. Dr. Coyi brought two active international Rotarians with him; Diana and Roger White who reside in St. Thomas, Virgin Islands. Kuffner and Tillet spear headed the tour taking Dr. Coyi and the visitors to ten San Mateo homes who were using the filters. The Rotarians interviewed each of the residents, asking them questions about their filter use and how it has impacted their everyday life.

San-Mateo-Group-With-Filters

Nine out of ten people stated that they were grateful for their Sawyer filters. And several residents pointed out that they’d noticed improvements in their family’s health. Sawyer filters that were given out by the Rotary Club have improved the water and health of those who use them.

Even though there are still many obstacles to overcome for the improvement of San Mateo, the Rotary Club has ensured their assistance to the project. The team’s goal is to assure that the Sawyer filters do not go to waste and are properly utilized; therefore Rotary will be providing more training on the filters for the residents. Dr. Coyi and the Rotary Club visitors will be giving San Mateo 40 more filters this year. Dr. Coyi plans to submit a follow up grant to obtain more Sawyer filters for Belize. San Mateo residents interested in receiving water filters to treat their drinking water can contact Nurse Glenda, resident of San Mateo. Interested persons will be listed and invited to the next training.

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