Vol. 12 Quenching Thirst, Hand in Hand
Republic of Senegal
The Senegal River flows from headwaters in the Guinea Highlands and at each of ten villages scattered around the river’s watershed in northern Senegal, work is underway for installing new Yamaha Clean Water Supply Systems. Permanent access to the clean water the systems will provide means healthier, happier lives for everyone. If the water changes, lives will change. The water station is a gathering place for the villagers and is lively again today with laughter and conversation.
The mountain rains seep into the earth and slowly travel the underground water veins, the microorganisms within this flow purifying the water in stages and making it drinkable for villages at the foot of the mountain. Visualizing this process is a good way to understand how the Yamaha Clean Water Supply System uses slow sand filtration to purify water. This compact water purification system employs this same natural filtration process—requiring neither large amounts of electricity nor skilled technicians for maintenance—so that local residents can manage and operate it themselves. This makes it very effective in villages with no public water system and the systems are being installed in greater numbers primarily in Southeast Asia and Africa.
Yamaha Motor began installing these systems free-of-charge in ten villages along the Senegal River through a project grant from the Japanese government to Senegal’s. Temperatures can exceed 45° Celsius on hot days in Senegal, but a Yamaha technician from Japan works in the sweltering heat together the local people, supervising the installation of the system and instructing the villagers on the maintenance it will require. “In every village we’ve installed a system, we were thanked by so many people and that made me so happy,” he recalls.