26 June, 2012
On June 22nd, 2012, after a 3 hours drive and a steep yet beautiful 30 minutes walk up in the hills of Naitasiri, Johnny Engell-Hansen, Deputy Head of the European Union delegation in the Pacific, Sebastiaan De Smet (European Union), Gael Léopold, Manager of the Rotary Pacific Water For Life Foundation (RPW) and Etika Sing (ProjectsCoordinator for RPW) eventually reached the village of Roma for the openingof the village's new water project.
During the official ceremony, inhabitants through the District Representative, Mr Samu Nasagavale, expressed their gratitude to RPW and their two main sponsors, Fiji Water Foundation and Vodafone ATH Foundation for completing the village water project. With a growing population, the village could no longer supply drinking water to everyone in the village. Therefore RPW has been working for a few weeks with the villagers to find and secure a new water catchment in the hills above the village in order to bring safe drinking water to everyone in the village. From now on, villagers won't have to carry their own supply in buckets or bottles which will be a great relief for them.
Mr Engell-Hansen, Deputy Head of the EU delegation in the Pacific, reminded the people from the village of the importance of water in everyone's day-to-day life, explaining that he also had to struggle for sufficient water when he was a child on an island of Denmark. Both he and Mr Léopold also reminded the villagers that from now on the responsibility of this 20,000 FJD water project is in their hands and they wished good luck to the newly created water committee.
With this project, the Rotary Pacific Water For Life Foundation has brought safe drinking water to more than 50,000 people in Fiji since 2007 and is looking at doing more projects in the years to come.