Tuesday, April 08, 2008
Ok so we started going full boar in installing water filters. Many people just outside the city have to pay for their drinking water. We are helping them change that. They use there own well water and within a day it's 50% cleaner.
We are not only installing them but also training the people how to install them, so that they can do it themselves and serve other communities in their region.
Well the water filter project is cruising along. For those of you who don't know I have been working with Tim Stewart on the Bio water filter project. We are giving the technology for clean water to areas of the Philippines that need it the most.
I recently made contact with a group called TRI-CON tribal concern. They help with the development of tribes in indigenous areas of Mindanao. They are a group that help the tribes understand their rights and the policies in place for the land that they have been living on for hundreds of years. Big corporations want to take that land away from the people for commercial use.
I was invited to a seminar that TRI-CON was doing (very last minute) to share with the tribes what we could offer in the way of clean water. The tribes represented were Bla-an, T'boli-ubo, and Manobo Dulangan and some in the area of Tiboli. These are mainly Muslim tribes. There were also many people that just showed up with their own stories of life for their communities. It was a very emotional time. After I gave my presentation there were many questions. I only planned on presenting the opportunity. I didn't expect an overwhelming response adding over an hour to the time. One lady said that there were 106 children that died in her community in 2006 due to dirty water, and the stats have only increased since that time. Another local government official said that no one has tried to help them in the area of clean water. These are places in the middle of nowhere with no electricity and no running water.
This time was very interesting and educational. I had been out in the BUK (jungle) before on other outreaches, but never as far away as this meeting was. We were 6 hrs away from home in S.Cotobato. This whole area is 90% Muslim. It was an eye opening trip that allowed me to see some of the realities these communities face. People are dying and thank the Lord, He has given us a way we can help.
On another fun note: the area we were in happened to be the Talapia (species of fish) capital of Mindanao. I also had an opportunity to play for the first time ever the Gong drums. These drums are made of solid brass and indigenous to this area. The video of my first attempt at it is below. In case you think I was kidding about being in or near a jungle, I took a picture of a monkey for you too:)
You can tell the condition of the "resort" that we stayed in. The toilet facilities were exceptional. Nothing like a squatty potty to relieve yourself;) It's not exactly the Fairmont or for that matter a Motel 6 on the outskirts of Spuzzum. I did suffer two days later from the trots after that trip. The bacteria there is obviously different than where we live. All part of being a missionary in a third world country. Cheers