March 2012              Volume 1 Issue 2LIWANAG                                                          *                ...
A wonderful Year of the Water Dragon to you!      The program ended 2011 on a high note and caught up in the hustle and bu...
Bringing modern energy services to rural householdsA rural electrification program of the United States Agency for Interna...
Bringing modern energy services to rural households                                                                       ...
Firing up students’ learning through modern education equipmentBy connecting students in poor rural villages to modern tec...
Pumping up healthier lives through access to safe water      The USAID-funded AMORE Program works with rural communities a...
Pumping up healthier lives through access to safe water        Project Partners   Coca-Cola Foundation, Inc.  Langgonuan B...
AMORE is a USAID-funded rural                                                                                             ...
Service Above Self  Many villages in Zamboanga del Norte are found deep in  the mountains, which literally bar basic socia...
Head Office                        Unit 68, 6/F Landco Corporate Center                      J.P. Laurel Venue, Bajada, Da...
Light and Water in the Year of the Water Dragon (AMORE Program March 2012 Newsletter)
Light and Water in the Year of the Water Dragon (AMORE Program March 2012 Newsletter)
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Light and Water in the Year of the Water Dragon (AMORE Program March 2012 Newsletter)


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The AMORE Program - a USAID-funded rural electrification program using renewable energy technologies, in the Philippines - is poised to bring more 'light' and 'water' in remote off-grid rural areas in the country

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Light and Water in the Year of the Water Dragon (AMORE Program March 2012 Newsletter)

  1. 1. March 2012 Volume 1 Issue 2LIWANAG * *Brightness or luminosityAn AMORE Program Newsletter in the Year of the Water Dragon
  2. 2. A wonderful Year of the Water Dragon to you! The program ended 2011 on a high note and caught up in the hustle and bustle typical of the holiday season. We, and representatives of partner organizations, went to a number of project sites to bring Christmas gifts and celebrate the coming of light and water to schools and villages. And what celebrations they were! We inaugurated the school photovoltaic systems in Cagbalete Island in Quezon, Sultan Kudarat, and Isla Verde in Batangas City; turned over a newly completed potable water system in a coastal community in Sarangani; and ‘hung’ solar lanterns for Christmas in a remote mountain village in Zamboanga del Norte. Three months into 2012, and the celebrations continue as the Dragon year of festivals and celebrations unfold. As predicted by astrologers, the year indeed got off to a fast start and things have been happening early in the year even for the program. In January we saw the Business Development Assistance scheme take off, and bring solar home systems and solar lanterns to off-grid households – and more important – business opportunities for PV suppliers and community entrepreneurs. Also in January, the program had been busy building the capacities of women technicians on solar technology, and further honing the skills of the first batch of TESDA Solar PV Technicians training graduates. As follow-on to commitments made to project partners towards the tail end of 2011, program staff had been working hard installing PV systems in schools in islands in Quezon and Batangas provinces for the past two months. Finally, the Year of the Water Dragon opened with the completion of the program’s safe water projects commitment to partner Coca-Cola Foundation, Inc., and – owing to sound project management – a promise of water access to more waterless rural villages! The world after all celebrates World Water Day this month, and what better way for the program to celebrate than to give a sense of water security to residents of underserved areas in the country. Many believe that this year – being the year of water – is one of good fortune, of things moving, ideas flowing and creativity abounding. We do too. We look forward to a creative and productive year ahead of bringing energy and water to more rural communities around the country! Laurie B. Navarro Chief of Party-1-
  3. 3. Bringing modern energy services to rural householdsA rural electrification program of the United States Agency for International Development, the Alliance for Mindanaoand Multi-Regional Renewable/Rural Energy Development Program works with rural communities to bring modernenergy services to unenergized, off-grid areas in the country. Towards this end, AMORE employs a community-centric approach that strengthens capacities of community members to successfully engage in the renewable energybusiness in a sustainable manner. Solar lanterns brighten up Christmas Day in Panampalay total of 1,700 households in far-flung villages in the Zamboanga What is BDA? The only lanterns the Subanen residents of the village of Peninsula, the Marilog District of Davao City, and Sultan Kudarat Panampalay – some 600 meters above sea level and 27 kilometers now own either a solar home system (200 households) or a solarAMORE’s Business Development from downtown Roxas in Zamboanga del Norte – had ever hung lantern (1,500 households), while six villages now have access toAssistance Packages constitute an on their homes for Christmas were those made from color crepe solar photovoltaic lantern charging stations.innovative approach that facilitatescommercial sale and sustainable paper that they bought atoperations of renewable energy the market, or those madesystems in underserved, unenergized from wood that they craftedrural market, through the use of themselves. December 2011financing and delivery mechanismsthat are within the reach and capacity held a promise of a different,to pay of the target household market. brighter Christmas from then on as small capacity lightingThere are three packages: systems – solar photovoltaicPackage 1: AMORE helps strengthen lanterns – were broughtorganizations’ and businesses’ capacityto engage in the rural electrification to the mountain village bybusiness through provision of technical no less than Santa himself.assistance which includes, among A week before Christmas A total of 1,500 solar lanterns were provided to households, andothers, business plan preparation, Day, AMORE and project six solar lantern charging stations were constructed in villagesdevelopment of financial and across the Zamboanga Peninsula, Sultan Kudarat and Davao City,administrative systems, technical partner Rotary Club of under the Business Development Assistance scheme.trainings, market development, project Dipolog (whose oneproposal preparation and packaging. member dressed as Santa It was a happy day for residents Claus) negotiated the steep New Year, new job Michiel Cabel, a mother of four, welcomes of Panampalay as AMORE and thePackage 2: Amore bids out contracts Rotary Club of Dipolog came – and bumpy mountainside the new year with a prospect of a new job as solar PV technician.for the supply, delivery and installation with Santa Claus to boot – bearing Her husband and one-year old daughter in tow, the 24-yearof solar home systems and solar road leading to the gifts of rice and food for Noche old mother travelled 50 kilometers from their town Midsalip tolanterns of various capacities (high, Buena. village to bring residentsmedium, low). The lighting systems some gifts, and yes, the Pagadian City on January 30 to participate in a six-day trainingare managed by the concerned promise of light. Panampalay is one of the priority target areas in on solar PV systems,AMORE-organized BRECDA (Barangay installation andRenewable Energy and Community AMORE’s Business Development Assistance scheme which aims toDevelopment Association), and are jumpstart BRECDAs’ (Barangay Renewable Energy and Community servicing. Organizedoffered on a lease-to-own scheme Development Association) participation in the renewable energy in cooperation withto households previously selected the Internationalthrough a capacity-to-pay survey. Copper Association -Cost of monthly payments is based on Southeast Asia and thethe average monthly expenditure forhousehold lighting. Asian Development Bank, the All-WomenPackage 3: AMORE bids out PV Technicianscontracts for the supply, delivery training draws fromand installation of solar photovoltaiccharging station for solar lanterns, the experiences inand supply and delivery of solar Bangladesh andlanterns of among selected Sri Lanka wherehouseholds. BRECDAs manage thousands ofoperations of the solar lantern Members of Panampalay BRECDA look forward to having individual Participants at the All-Women lanterns for household use. The village had been previously energized women have beencharging station, demonstrating the PV Technicians Training learned with community lighting facilities under an AMORE-Department of successfully trainedfeasibility of such business model Energy partnership. about system componentsfor electrification of the poorest as solar technicians and basic maintenance andsegment of the rural market. and entrepreneurs. troubleshooting of solar PV (RE) business by making them custodians of RE systems which systems. they in turn offer to rural households on a lease-to-own scheme. A In the Philippines, -2-
  4. 4. Bringing modern energy services to rural households Participants at the TESDA Technicians Training participants test a solar-powered A total of 65 women from AMORE project sites across Mindanao underwent training on solar PV Training test a solar module. water pumping system. technology in batches held in Pagadian, Dipolog, Zamboanga and Cotabato cities. and servicing. All of the participants can be TESDA trainers and assessors for the particularparticularly in rural areas, women prove to be reliable community development competency level that they have successfully completed.leaders and workers, while the men act as breadwinners who are constantly mobilein search for work in the fields or in the city. Michiel shares that as a mother she isthe first to be concerned when basic necessities in the household are lacking, and itis in recognition of the woman’s natural nurturing role that the program looks intothem for the long-term care and maintenance of the renewable energy systems. Atotal of 65 women from AMORE project sites all over Mindanao were trained in fourseparate batches held in Pagadian, Dipolog, Zamboanga and Cotabato cities. The Sepaka micro-hydro project in Surallah, South Cotabato is seen to benefit at least 300 families in the village. Electricity from water in the Year of the Water Dragon Residents of two AMORE set up four different types of PV applications – 1kWp AC/DC system, 100-watt peak mountain villages in the province of South Cotabato can now look forward to having streetlight, 300-watt peak solar PV water pump, and three units of 20-watt peak solar home systems – at the TESDA-ARMM Regional Training Center in Maguindanao for the trainees’ access to electricity sourced from micro-hydro power as AMORE firms up a partnership practical hands-on exercises. with the Department of Energy that will complete the remaining works for the Lobo and Sepaka micro-hydro projects in the towns of Lake Sebu and Surallah, respectively.TESDA-ARMM graduates first batch of PV technicians and trainers Located 49 kilometers from the nearest power grid, Sitio Lobo in the village of Ned willAfter three years of preparatory work, AMORE finally held the first ever government- soon be energized by a 35-kilowatt micro-hydro system which will supply electricity to therecognized training on PV systems installation, servicing and design from November sitio’s more than 200 households and a number of livelihood enterprises and communal21 thru December 10 at the TESDA-ARMM Regional Training Center in Sultan Kudarat, facilities. On the other hand, at least 300 families are seen to benefit from the SepakaMaguindanao. A total of 21 participants from TESDA (Technical Education and Skills micro-hydro project, which like the Lobo project, will also supply electricity to enterprisesDevelopment Authority) and TESDA-affiliated technical and vocational institutions and communal facilities, including a school and a couple of mosques, in the remote village.joined the training course, and each of them received certification (called national Initial works and social preparation activities in both project sites were performed bycertificate or NC) for PV systems installation. Of the 21 training participants, 13 YAMOG.received further certification for PV systems servicing in addition to installation. Eight ofthe thirteen received further certification for PV systems design in addition to installation Activity Partners Department of Energy Soon to see the light.. • 1,000 households in Davao del Sur and Masbate with solar home International Copper Association – Southeast Asia systems, in partnership with the National Power Corporation- Technical Education and Skills Development Authority-ARMM Small Power Utilities Group Asian Development Bank • over 400 off-grid households in the Davao region energized in partnership with the Aboitiz Foundation, Inc. • 60 households with solar home systems in Mauban, Quezon, Community-based Organizations and Enterprises in partnership with Quezon Power Limited Co. and the Solar Technology Trading (Maguindanao) Mauban local government Well-of-Life Community Development (Davao City) • 180 households energized in Isla Verde, Batangas City, in partnership Zenar Telecoms (Tawi-Tawi) with the One Meralco Foundation-3-
  5. 5. Firing up students’ learning through modern education equipmentBy connecting students in poor rural villages to modern technology, the USAID’s AMORE Program strives to givethousands of students improved learning environment and, thus, a chance at a better quality of life in the future. Renewableenergy-powered educational television and connection to the worldwide web increase young people’s knowledge and teasetheir imagination of another world quite different from theirs. AMORE means LOVEA young student from a remote mountain village in Davao City tells us how she learned on E-Media (Education thru Multimedia) that Valentine’s Day (Hearts Day) was not about human hearts, but rather about love. In the days leading up to Christmas in December, AMORE program staff and partners learned and felt – and in many occasions, tasted – what love is when they found themselves overwhelmed by the very warm welcome and gratitude showed to them by students and teachers in three remote schools in a mountain village in Sultan Kudarat, and island villages in Quezon and Batangas City. The CagbaleteElementary School in Mauban, Quezon and the Villamonte Elementary School in Lebak, Sultan Kudarat each received a PV-powered distance education equipmentconsisting of two units of 210-watt peak SunPower solar panels, a 300 AH battery, television and DVD player, and educational DVD materials. The Parang CuevaElementary School in Isla Verde, Batangas City, meanwhile, is powered by a 1-kilowatt peak solar photovoltaic system. The school electrification activities were donein cooperation with project partners Quezon Power for Cagbalete Elementary School, and One Meralco Foundation for Parang Cueva Elementary School. 367 meters above sea level stands Villamonte Elementary School, a school to nearly 600 students who travel as far as 48 kilometers from the town center, along a dirt road on a habal-habal, to get to the school. The students – most of them Ilonggo – have recently begun to enjoy the benefits solar-powered educational television. Cagbalete elementary school no longer relies on rented batteries for electricity. A 420-watt peak solar photovoltaic system powers up multimedia education facilities at the elementary school.The pristine island of Cagbalete in Mauban, Quezon has got more than fine, sandyunexplored beaches. Accessible through a 20-minute boat ride from the town center,the island has become home to dedicated teachers who brave the furious ocean duringthe monsoon season to get to their students. The tireless teachers recently got help AMORE and partners receive a heart-warming welcome during a visit to Villamontefrom solar-powered electricity to liven up classroom interactions through a partnership Elementary School for the turnover of the school electrification system.between Quezon Power, the AMORE Program, and the local government of Mauban. Continued on page 8 -4-
  6. 6. Pumping up healthier lives through access to safe water The USAID-funded AMORE Program works with rural communities and their environments to finally provide waterless villages access to safe potable water. Various technologies such as spring development, rainwater harvesting and solar- powered pumping system are used to harness natural resources found in the communities. Water, Sanitation and Hygiene Projects and Accomplishments as of January 2012 Coca-Cola Foundation, Inc. shares happiness to residents and students of Sarangani and Sultan Kudarat as the world advocates water security COMMUNITY-BASED WATER SYSTEMS in celebration of World Water Day 2012 Province Project Site Safe Water Number of Technology household beneficiaries In December, AMORE program staff and guests from the Coca-Cola Foundation inaugurated1. Davao del Sur Upper Muslim, Bantol, Spring 65 Marilog District, development a spring development project in the village of Maguling in Maitum, Sarangani. The whole Davao City community celebrated the “coming of water” a few steps right outside their homes through the2. Davao del Sur Bangkal, Bantol, Spring 50 Marilog District, development 20 tap stands strategically placed around the village and neighboring Mindupok. The water Davao City system constructed by the local government four years prior only had enough capacity to supply3. Davao del Sur Mawato, Bantol,, Spring 40 Marilog District, development around 10 percent of the village’s more than 500 households dispersed throughout a sprawling Davao City area of 770 hectares. Worse off were those – mostly Muslims from Maguindanao – that settled4. Davao del Sur Malakiba, Bantol, Hydraulic ram 288 Marilog District, pump along the coast; they had to buy potable water from areas on higher ground which they then Davao City transport back on a tricycle to the coastal part of the village for PhP5 for every 20 liters.5. Davao del Sur Langgonuan, Bantol, Spring 60 Marilog District, development Davao City6. Davao del Sur Magsaysay, Marilog Spring 556 District, Davao City development7. Sarangani Kamanga, Maasim Spring 280 development8. Sarangani Kalaong (Maguling- Spring 796 Mindupok), Maitum development9. Zamboanga City Pangapuyan Rainwater 100 harvesting10. Zamboanga del San Antonio, Sergio Spring 120 Norte Osmeňa development11. Zamboanga del Panampalay, Roxas Spring 374 Norte development12. Zamboanga Gubaan, Aurora Rainwater 391 del Sur harvesting13. Zamboanga Del Monte, Buug Rainwater 365 Sibugay harvesting One of the new potable water system’s tapping points is found on the grounds of the Maguling National High School. Expected to benefit are TOTAL 3,485 the high school’s more than 600 students. SCHOOL-BASED WATER SYSTEMS1. Davao del Sur Marilog Central Rainwater 601 Elementary School, harvesting Marilog District, Davao City2. Davao del Sur Kibangay Elementary Rainwater 302 School, Malamba, harvesting Marilog District, Davao City3. Sultan Kudarat Columbio Elementary Rainwater 1,065 School, Columbio harvesting4. Sultan Kudarat Palembang Rainwater 1,459 Elementary School, harvesting Poblacion, Palembang5. Sultan Kudarat Salangsang Rainwater 668 Elementary School, harvesting Lebak6. Sultan Kudarat Tapudi Elementary Rainwater 813 School, Lebak harvesting7. Sultan Kudarat Villamonte Rainwater 628 Elementary School, harvesting Lebak TOTAL 5,536 GRAND TOTAL 9,021 An old water system in Brgy. Maguling could not adequately supply the big village’s water needs. -7-
  7. 7. Pumping up healthier lives through access to safe water Project Partners Coca-Cola Foundation, Inc. Langgonuan Barangay LGUNational Grid Corporation of the Philippines Quezon Power Limited Rotary Club of DipologRotary Club of Downtown DavaoSave the Children International- Philippine Country Office Soon to serve safe, potable water...• A solar-powered pump will soonlift water up to a 12 cubic meter tank,to serve the students and familiesof Cagbalete Island in Mauban, Three elementary schools – Salangsang, Tapudi, Villamonte –Quezon. Two units of 210-watt peak in the remote municipality of Lebak in Sultan Kudarat benefitsolar photovoltaic modules will Students and community members have fun playing parlor games Maguling barangay captain turns on the tap of during the pre-Christmas inauguration of the safe water system from AMORE-CCFI safe water collaborations.raise water up to a concrete tank for the newly completed potable water and eventual distribution to14 tapping points found around theisland’s elementary school. The Maguling-Mindupok safe water project is one of seven collaborations between the AMORE Program and Coca-Cola• A spring-fed gravity-type potablewater system will soon serve Foundation, Inc. A total of two community-based and five school-based safe water projects in Sarangani and Sultan Kudaratthe water needs of around 70households and 300 school children provinces, respectively, benefiting more than 11,000 individuals have been completed, giving hundreds of households evenin the village of Hanoon in LakeSebu, South Cotabato. the tiniest sense of ‘water security.’ Firing up students’ learning through modern education equipment School Electrification and Distance Education Projects and Accomplishments as of January 2012 Continued from page 4 Province Number of Number Schools of Student Beneficiaries Being groomed to be a model renewable energy community by AMORE project partner One Meralco Foundation, the picturesque Agusan del Sur 6 1,505 Isla Verde – home to six elementary school recipients of AMORE’s Batangas City 1 185 school electrification project – can be reached after more than Bukidnon 3 675 an hour of banca ride from mainland Batangas. In time for Davao del Norte 4 1,289 the Christmas season, the first of the six 1-kilowatt peak solar Davao del Sur 10 3,137 photovoltaic systems was inaugurated in Isla Verde’s Parang Cueva Elementary School. Residents of the island warmly welcomed NCR 1 1,593 guests led by DOE Undersecretary Jose Layug, Jr. and USAID-Office Quezon 1 483 of Energy and Environment Deputy Chief Joseph Foltz, with the Sarangani 2 324 A 1-kilowatt peak solar PV system at Parang Cueva Elementary trademark Batangueňo hospitality complete with kapeng barako, School is able to power up CFL lights for the school’s 10 Sultan Kudarat 25 7,352 classrooms and the DepEd’s district office located in the school puto and local fruits. campus. Zamboanga City 2 5,753 Zamboanga del 11 3,021 Norte TOTAL 66 25,317 Activity Partners SunPower Foundation Energy Development Corporation Intel Philippines Lawang Bato National High School Library Renewal Partnership Malampaya Foundation, Inc. One Meralco Foundation PhilCarbon Quezon Power Philippines Guests led by DOE Undersecretary Jose Layug, Jr. and USAID Office of Energy and Environment’s Joseph Foltz are overwhelmed by the accommodating San Miguel Corporation reception showed to them by the whole Isla Verde community in Batangas City. Zamboanga City -8-
  8. 8. AMORE is a USAID-funded rural electrification program that – together with the Department of Energy, SunPower Foundation, Winrock International and other partner organizations – energizes remote, off-grid rural areas through renewable energy technologies such as solar and micro-hydro. the luxury of offering their services for lower rates, and still Micro-hydro energy kick starts manage to turn in a profit of PHP4,000 (USD93) a month on community development average. Run-off water from the micro-hydro plant was turned Before 2004, the sitio of Lam-alis in the mountain village of into a fish pond that now generates decent income for the Datal Blao in Columbio, some 30 kilometers from the main association. Encouraged by all these livelihood activities and highway of the province of Sultan Kudarat, was just like any inspired by the desire to help out neighbours, the association typical upland agricultural community. The indigenous B’laan soon started a lending business whose collection of payments – Project Police and Christian residents –living harmoniously alongside each other –tilled their corn, banana and rice farms, tended their principal plus 5 percent interest – coincided with the harvest season after every fourth month. small orchards, and worked on their rattan handicrafts. All activity would halt by the time the sun set, to continue the Extra dose of ‘energy’ following morning when the shroud of darkness enveloping Such was the business frame of mind of LACREA when the the community is yet again lifted by the rising of the sun. AMORE jeep pulled up– after seven years – in front of Ethel’s house. And AMORE – re-named Alliance for Mindanao and And then AMORE – a rural electrification program jointly Multi-Regional Renewable/Rural Energy Development at the funded by the United States Agency for International start of the third phase in October 2009 – could not have Development and the Philippine Department of Energy come at a better time. together with a slew of private The micro-hydro power plant brought electricity Supporting the sector partners to more than 80 households in the sitio in 2004. government’s bid to – came to the energize 90 percent of total community and But what it really did was to give a much needed households in the country brought with kick start to their community’s development. by 2017, the AMORE them the welcome program was going back news that the sitio to villages it had previously will soon be electrified by a 9-kilowatt micro-hydro energy energized in the program’s past two phases to facilitate source around 300 meters from where residents lived. The access to electricity to more households in the village. Within government was then in the middle of an aggressive rural a climate of government-led and private sector-participated electrification program, and it wanted the entire country’s promotion of every nook and cranny up to the remotest village, with access renewable energy to electricity. technologies, the AMORE program Alongside the power plant’s construction were a series was looking of various trainings that Ethel Lasib took active part in. to facilitate Winrock International, the AMORE Program’s administrator, household made community organizing and capacity building a core electrification strategy so that every village energized using then less by encouraging known renewable energy technologies was organized into and supporting a local association called the Barangay Renewable Energy renewable energy and Community Development Association (or BRECDA), and business activities trained, not only on technical subjects, but on basic financial in off-grid areas and organizational management and development concepts in Mindanao. as well. When AMORE The trainings helped members of the Lam-alis Christian-B’laan went back to Renewable Energy Association (LACREA) manage and run Lam-alis and efficiently not only the micro-hydro power plant, but also the re-designed the spring-fed potable water system that was constructed – also micro-hydro by the AMORE Program – shortly after the sitio was energized. power plant to LACREA’s Board of Directors hold a meeting incorporate a once a week and a general assembly once a month to talk about matters that concern the Considered the projects’ ‘police,’ Ethel proudly ‘reports’ battery charging association. that the policies as regards operation and maintenance station to be able of both the renewable energy (RE) and water systems to serve more agreed upon by the members in 2004 are still in place, households in and enforced by the officers led by no less than her. As the community, LACREA Treasurer since 2009, she wields ledger and pen LACREA saw in one hand, and shears in the other, with equal ease and a business comfort. The dreaded shears, she says, are for cutting off opportunity. The association led by Ethel has transformed into an enterprising organization connections – either electricity or water – to households Out of the that leads the small community towards economic development. no longer willing to honor their fiscal responsibilities of association’s paying as low as PHP100.00 per month (USD2.3/month) funds, it for electricity and PHP10 each month (USD0.23/month) purchased for water. batteries and loaned them The micro-hydro power plant brought electricity to more to interested than 80 households in the sitio in 2004. But what it really households in did, in Ethel’s view, was that it gave a much needed kick the village on an start to their community’s development. When the power affordable lease- plant began operations seven years ago, what was found to-own scheme. was electricity that promised to community members – Forty new and succeeded – to lead the way out of darkness, and out households in of absolute poverty. the village now Benefiting from electricity are rattan furniture have access to makers who now find themselves able to work As of March 2011, more than three hundred thousand electricity from well into the night. pesos (USD7,000) is in LACREA’s bank account. the micro-hydro Constituting this huge sum are members’ membership power plant. dues, electricity and water fees payments, and profits from the association’s corn mill, fish pond and lending Indeed, LACREA has gone a long way from a community businesses. Since the advent of electricity in the sitio, association organized primarily to sustain renewable energy the association-run corn mill has progressively served and water system into an enterprising organization that leads the milling needs of the town’s corn farmers. At PHP1 Lam-alis towards economic development. Sound financialThe 9kW power plant supplies electricity to households and enterprises, for every kilo of corn to be milled, LACREA chargesincluding a rice and corn mill, at Sitio Lam-alis. management and business principles have allowed LACREA considerably less than other millers in the area. Cheap to turn itself from AMORE’s project beneficiary to a genuine electricity from the micro-hydro plant has afforded them partner towards sustainable community development.-9-
  9. 9. Service Above Self Many villages in Zamboanga del Norte are found deep in the mountains, which literally bar basic social services from Landslides – a usual occurrence on the mountainside road reaching the residents. to Panampalay – made delivery of construction materials difficult and perilous.Some 600 meters above sea level and55 kilometers from downtown Dipologsomewhere on the narrow winding roadon the side of the Zamboanga del Nortemountains, Rotarian Lindon Seediet getsoff the four-wheeled pick-up and on toa habal-habal ¬– a motorcycle – for therest of the journey to Brgy. Panampalay. In his many travels to the remote villages for the safe water project, Lindon often encountered swollen rivers and landslides.Rains are an almost daily occurrence inthis exquisite tropical rainforest-shroudedarea; and as if that wasn’t enough tomake the ground wet and slippery, themonsoon rains pour down to soak theearth to a dangerous level. Lindon is still Eight communal taps now serve the safe water needs of more than 200 households in the remote village.a few kilometres away from the village –talk about a hinterland! – yet he already beyond one’s comfort zone so that thosethinks to himself that there is no way the not as fortunate may experience some ofsafe water project could be implemented the conveniences – and necessities – thathere. For while the upland villagers may one has often taken for harboring dreams of accessible andreliable safe water source, he is having “The community members’ profuse gratitude,unpleasant visions of a nightmare – a and the sight of women and children goinglogistical nightmare. about their daily tasks by the water tap stand, have made it all worth it,” Lindon says.That was in June 2009. Falling under the broader USAID-RotaryEighteen months after that first close International Water Alliance Program, theencounter with how residents from the Panampalay safe water project has notSubanen tribe of the last-mile village in only brought safe, potable water from Before the construction of a potable water system, low-lying intermittent springs which dried up inthe town of Roxas lived, after numerous the summer were the residents’ source of water. the mountain source down to thefailed attempts to haul in and deliver communities at least 100 meters belowconstruction materials in the first three of high-density polyethylene SDR 13.5 pipes convey the through the construction of a watermonths of project implementation, after a cool spring water from the reservoir down to the eight system, but educates communityprotracted six-month delivery of gravel and communal taps that had been scattered all over the village. members on proper sanitation andsand and steel, after at least three memorable Two-hundred forty households or 1,440 individuals – who hygiene as well.incidents of delivery dump trucks not being until then had lived all their lives having to scurry to theable to go back village’s numerous low-pressure The USAID, through its projects – one ofdown after a “The challenge is to go beyond one’s low-lying intermittent springs to which is the AMORE Program – and thedelivery (either comfort zone so that those not as fetch a jug of water which took at Rotary Foundation, through its competitivebecause the least an hour to fill – have begun Hunger, Health and Humanity (3-H) Grantsmountainside fortunate may experience some of the to enjoy the benefits of a reliable, program, has provided over a million dollarhad become conveniences – and necessities – that one convenient, and safe drinking grant funding for five water and sanitationimpassable due to has often taken for granted.” - Lindon water source. projects to local Rotary Clubs and Districts.a recent landslide, The Philippines is one of the three pilotor because the vehicle had broken down The Alliance for Mindanao and Multi-regional Renewable/ countries for the USAID-RI Water Alliance,after too much exertion going up) or of near- Rural Energy Development-Phase III (AMORE 3) Program the others being Ghana and the Dominicancapsized delivery vehicles, and after so many and project partner, the Rotary Club of Dipolog, could Republic.times of hissing under one’s breath and thinking have easily picked another community beneficiary; 64“What have I gotten myself into,” a concrete percent of households in the town of Roxas, or 68 percent The Rotary Club of Dipolog and AMOREreservoir, measuring eight cubic meters, of all households in the entire province of Zamboanga del Program implemented a similar safe waterproudly stood some 600 meters above sea level Norte, after all, are still without access to safe water. But as is project in Brgy. San Antonio in the town ofin Brgy. Panampalay. Nearly two kilometers always the case in development work, the challenge is to go Sergio Osmeňa. -10-
  10. 10. Head Office Unit 68, 6/F Landco Corporate Center J.P. Laurel Venue, Bajada, Davao City 8000 T/F: (63 82)2822517 Satellite Office 2401 Jollibee Plaza Bldg., F. Ortigas, Jr. Rd. Ortigas Center, Pasig City 1600 T: (63 2)6879283/6321233 F: (63 2)6312809 This publication is made possible by the supportof the American people through the United States Agency for International Development. The contents are the responsibility of Winrock International and do not necessarily reflect the views of USAID or the United States Government.