Congratulation to the team from Massey University who recently received the People’s Choice Award for their Organic Ash Soap project for the 2015 EWB Challenge. This was awarded by popular vote of the participants at EWB Australia’s Making an Impact Summit .
“Students making an Impact” was one of the 3 key themes at the Summit and included the 2015 EWB Challenge Finalists Showcase. Massey University was the NZ region entrant in the Finals, along with 6 Australian regional teams. The Summit was held in Melbourne on 14 December 2015 and attended by 111 passionate advocates for positive social change.
For the EWB Australia news article on the Challenge outcomes for 2015 see link below http://www.ewb.org.au/announcements/639/11523
The rainy season has officially started. It has been marked by at least one torrential downpour each day. This is no Christchurch spittle; this is the kind of rain which carves channels through the roads, momentarily flooding them, it is the kind of rain with enough significance that everybody stops to watch.Read more
Cyclone Pam hits Vanuatu. Two out of five water tanks were destroyed. Progress until then had been thwarted by the arrival of Cyclone Pam. Fortunately, Mark was safe and returned to New Zealand within two weeks of the cyclone’s arrival.
An EWB volunteer, Mark Holden, who is also an engineer at Beca, will be spending six months in Ambrym between November 2014 and May 2015. He will be working with the local community, to construct a new rainwater harvesting system, and carrying out plumbers and management training so that the system will be maintained and managed well.Read more
Last week we had an external Monitoring And Evaluation person to check on our progress from DFATs point of view. Unfortunately, the funding came through from DFAT very late, and as our team has barely been set up, we have not made much progress. He helped us align our thinking as a team and made sure we are headed in the right direction. One thing he suggested was building of sanitation parks in the communities, showcasing a range of toilet and hand washing facilities, rather than Live and Learn's proposed demo toilet, which would just showcase compost toilets.Read more
This week I’ve done some travelling around Santo, and a curious phenomena I’ve seen is the practice of placing a bottle filled with water on top of the electricity meter. On Sunday I drove to the Lope Lope river to swim with my flatmate Liz and her sister, as this is where some of their extended family live. According to some, this makes the meter tick over slower. Things definitely work differently in Vanuatu!Read more
The locals call it Santo Village, but the Americans called it Luganville. Here in the biggest settlement on Espiritu Santo is where i’ll be spending the next 6 weeks, living on campus in one of the flats at Santo East Primary Secondary School. The town itself is a hodgepodge of buildings, concrete footpaths, and high gutters for the rainy season. There are hand-painted signs, even for international banks which adds character to the street side. The marketplace also provides a central meeting point of the town. Here, peanuts, pineapple, mango and taro and be obtained for a fraction of the cost of most fruit and vegetables in New Zealand.Read more