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Engineers Without Borders

EWB-USA members work with communities around the world to find appropriate solutions for water supply, sanitation, energy, agriculture, civil works and structures.

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NACE International is partnering with Engineers Without Borders USA to support their mission to build a better world through engineering projects that empower communities to meet their basic human needs and equip leaders to solve the world’s most pressing challenges. This fall, we have allocated funds to support two EWB projects.

Thanks for voting! The grant recipients will be announced soon.

Ebukwala Borehole Well, Kenya

Montana State University Chapter

Khwisero is a densely populated rural district in western Kenya that has limited access to clean water and sanitation infrastructure. Currently, the most common sanitation technology, unlined pit-latrines, do not prevent human excrement and waste from contaminating drinking water, creating a vector for disease. Our borehole well project will bypass the contaminated shallow water table and access a deeper, confined, clean aquifer.

Students from Ebukwala Primary School in Khwisero are sent twice a day to gather water. Young girls are disproportionately sent on these water retrieval trips, thereby removing them from the school for upwards of 1.5 hours per day. Implementing a borehole well at Ebukwala Primary School will significantly reduce each student’s risk of waterborne illness and allow all students to receive the same amount of schooling. This additional time in school is valuable to young girls within the community because it significantly improves their opportunities for higher education.

Phase: Design/implementation
Planned travel dates: May 2017

Saccha Water Project, Peru

Temple University Chapter

The community we have partnered with is the small agricultural village of Saccha in northern Peru. The community lacks access to clean water and this contributes to disease, poverty, and death. The community is very motivated to bring clean water to their village. We will work with the community members to tap a local spring, purify the water, and pipe it to the village using a gravity fed distribution system. This will lead to an overall improvement in public health and sanitary conditions in the community.

Instead of depending on potable water delivery or buying clean water in bulk (which is costly) or drinking unsanitary water, our project will allow the community to have an abundance of clean, fresh water to satisfy their drinking, cooking, and sanitary needs. This system will be right in the center of the community, eliminating the need to travel for water.

Phase: Assessment
Planned travel dates: January 2017


San Pedro de Casta Water Sanitation Project, Peru

University of New Hampshire Chapter

The Peru program has concentrated on water sanitation projects to improve the quality of water in the community. Last August, a team traveled to the community to install a drip chlorination system, but found that changes to the piping networks and the political situation were inconducive to the implementation of the system. The team re-focused its efforts on gaining an understanding of the situation in the community by walking the piping network, visiting water sources, and sponsoring negotiations between community stakeholders in order to establish new goals for the water system.

The community lacks sufficient water during peak use periods during the day. This leaves community members and the school without enough water to drink, cook, or do household chores. The goal of our water supply project is to increase the quantity of water coming to San Pedro de Casta such that all entities in the community, including the schools, have sufficient amounts of water throughout the day. Possible options to achieve this outcome include troubleshooting an existing pipeline; lining an existing spring and providing an outlet structure to more efficiently utilize that water source; and constructing a pipeline to an alternative water source.

Phase: Implementation
Travel Dates: January 2017



EWB-CCNY Completes Assessment Trip for Nicaragua Water Project

The recipients of the first NACE Engineers Without Borders grant have returned from their assessment trip to Tadazna, Nicaragua. Students from the City College of New York chapter (EWB-CCNY) are working with local residents to develop a new water system for the community. Currently, residents of Tadazna must trek long distances to collect water for drinking, bathing and cooking. EWB-CCNY plans to build six groundwater wells located throughout the community. The design of the wells will allow for clean and safe water for daily use and consumption, decreasing the risk of contamination and disease.

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Up Next: EWB-Fordham University to Build Fish Ponds in Uganda

The Fordham University chapter of Engineers Without Borders received a grant from NACE International to help fund their upcoming implementation trip to build fish ponds in Uganda. The project will address the financial and nutritional needs of the Omorio Village. This project entails teaching the families to maintain and operate the pond, including safety and security and the process of draining the pond for harvesting. The fish ponds will create a new and renewable source of nutrition, and will diversify the economy and provide an extra source of income for the community.