WELCOME TO PROJECT 509
We build complete rainwater harvesting systems, and repair/retrofit existing ones, in remote mountain communities in Haiti. The communities where we work have no running water, electricity, or road access. Children hike 3-5 hours round trip every day to collect drinking water from streams that are also used to wash clothes, water animals, and bathe; these streams are almost always contaminated, and water borne disease runs rampant.
The rainwater harvesting systems we build are the best available way to increase access to clean drinking water in an area experiencing rapid desertification; they also reduce the amount children have to walk to collect drinking water - which opens more time for them attend school.
We also offer educational programs about basic sanitation and hygiene (WASH), and have begun to explore opportunities with local leaders to improve water efficiency for agricultural needs. All of the work we do is community driven, materials are purchased locally, and each system we build creates 5-7 jobs in the area.
In 2016/17, we built 8 complete systems, repaired/retrofitted 6 more, and rebuilt 2 collapsed buildings and 2 roofs that were blown off during Hurricane Matthew (Oct '16).
Please see our ABOUT PAGE for a more detailed description of our history, past accomplishments, and ethos.
RAIN CATCHMENT SYSTEMS
Each rain catchment system holds approximately 5000 gallons of harvested rain water. They are built by one of three locals who have gone through training under a recently terminated UN program. Locals provide the hard labor, to dig the hole (the most difficult part) although the local engineer is paid a nominal wage. Project 509 pays for the materials, skilled labor, and transportation. Locals decide on where each system will be located. Each system costs approximately $1,500 to build, monitor, and maintain.
Robia is one of the largest communities in the area, and is a central meeting place for most people who live nearby. The community center / church serves over 300 people, and is an important point of access for clean drinking water. During Hurricane Matthew (Oct '16), the roof was blown off just after we completed the cistern. Fortunately, we were able to rebuild the roof, and install the rain catchment system before the spring rains arrived.
Tifon is one of the communities with the most difficult access to clean water. This new system, completed in September, will provide clean water access to over 25 families.
Completed in July of 2016, at the school in Baddy; over 400 students will have regular access to clean water.
Completed in June of 2016, water will be provided to over 30 families.
Repaired system at a school; completed in March of 2016, water will be provided to over 300 students, as well as over 15 local families.
Completed in June of 2016, water will be provided to over 22 Families.
Repaired system at a church; completed in May of 2015, water is provided to people throughout the extended community, as well as over 20 immediately local families. The video at the top of this page was filmed while repairing the system in Pensik.