by Brian Jensen, Project Manager
For the last few months we’ve been testing out a new data collection system to provide our teams with operational visibility in even the most remote areas. That requires going to the most remote areas to test it! So, in the context of our 100 Wells in the North East Project, I went to the commune of Fort Liberte in a small town called Haut Madeline where our team was taking a water point survey. It was a rough two days. It just happens that the highest mountain in the area has a large spring at the top, which means we have to climb that mountain. It always looks much closer than it actually is!
To take this water survey, we are tasked with finding the areas that are in the “most need” of Haiti Outreach’s intervention. So we go to every water source where people get water and take information on its potability (cleanliness), flow rate, management, etc. That’s a lot of water points and a LOT of walking! Then we work with the national water agency (DINEPA), the local authorities, and the communities to come up with solutions for those communities in most need of clean, managed water.
After arriving at the spring we found that it was not just one big easily capped spring but many small springs over a fairly large area. Not as useful as we had hoped! So we logged that one on the mWater mobile app that we’re testing and it automatically updated the database and the map showing all known water points and people’s access to them. It did all this from the top of a mountain! No more spending days entering hundreds of paper reports and filing them away in file cabinets. At this rate we should be finished with the commune in a week!