Agua Pura Para El Pueblo is a nonprofit, nongovernmental organization founded to help communities and families obtain safe, clean drinking water and improve their sanitation. Over one billion people world wide lack access to safe water, and a million children die each year due to preventable diarrheal diseases. With a focus on Latin America, we promote simple small scale methods and techniques that people can use to make their water safe to drink. We also give seminars and demonstrations both in the United States and in Latin America to other nongovernmental organizations and to community groups on methods of water purification.
We also train professionals and others in simple methods to test water for bacterial contamination, the most common cause of water borne disease. Currently, in many parts of the world accurate water testing is rarely done due to the cost and complexity of testing procedures. Now, newer simpler and less expensive methods are available, methods that can be easily adapted to different cultures and situations. Agua Pura gives workshops in these procedures and provides testing materials to participants.
The focus of our organization is on small scale methods and techniques that individual families can adopt at little expense. Larger community based water and sanitation systems inevitably are more complex, cost more per person to build and maintain, are less efficient, are dependent on outside resources and are often unobtainable in the short term. Small scale water conservation, water recycling, water purification and sanitation programs on the other hand are simpler, faster, cheaper and can be implemented without need for outside resources or funding.
We at Agua Pura Para El Pueblo believe in and promote sustainability in all our projects. Too often, well meaning projects are done that lack a long term plan for continued use and support. This is waste of resources and good will when projects are abandoned after a short period. We believe that planning with communities in advance of projects and seeking their input and participation before beginning helps insure that programs will continue after the project is completed. Often, micro-loans and small for-profit enterprises can help secure local commitment. Projects should be frequently reevaluated to see if they are meeting their goals and also meeting the needs of the people they serve.
Agua Pura Para El Pueblo does not normally sponsor work projects with teams of volunteers. Our plan is to work with other nonprofit organizations to train others in these procedures and methods so that they in turn can teach local families and communities. Where resources are available, Agua Pura has given workshops in local communities to demonstrate methods of water disinfection and sanitation.