29/4/15 Labour Day trip to Gansu a success

pic1Our Gansu trip was hectic. On April 29, the three of us (Dina, Julie, Jimmy) took an 18-hour overnight train from Beijing to Lanzhou, Gansu.

Gansu is a province in the northwest of China, situated between the Tibetan Plateau and the Loess (Huangtu) Plateau. The northwest of China has a semi-arid to arid climate, meaning that precipitation levels are very low. For this reason, there is a water problem in many rural areas; many areas don’t have access to safe drinking water.

The three of us went to Gansu province to build a biosand water filter (BSF) at a rural primary school and to train university students in Lanzhou how to build BSFs.

In Gansu, our partner project is “A Cup of Health”. Two members from the project were kind enough to take us around Lanzhou to visit tourist spots and eat street food. Three students from this project (from Northwest Normal University 西北师范大学) also joined us on our trip to Chenyuan (陈塬) Primary School. pic3

The six of us arrived at Chenyuan at 5 PM on Friday after a 12-hour long bus journey. We sifted and washed rocks and sand until 8PM, had a home-cooked dinner at the home of the one of the school’s teachers (Teacher Chen), and went to bed at 11 PM. The next morning, we woke up at 5:30 AM to continue sifting and washing. Long story short, we finished the BSF successfully by 11:30 AM just in time to catch the bus that comes at 12:30 PM only once a day.

We weren’t just there to build a BSF. The three students from Northwest Normal University prepared a lesson about clean water for the children. Last time, students from the same organisation gave out reusable water bottles to the children. This time, they came with heaps of books to start a school library.

On Sunday morning, we conducted a BSF training session at Northwest Normal University. Julie did a great presentation on BSFs. This was followed by a very active question and answer session with the 10 university students who attended, after which we all went outside to make mini BSFs.

We would like to thank the China Environmental Protection Foundation for their support of this trip.

Chinese version

4月30日下午,3个清源协会的志愿者(Dina, Jimmy和Julie)从北京前往兰州了!这次去兰州的主要目的是在陈塬小学建造生物慢滤池(Biosand filter,BSF)。我们和爱心天使西部助学会以及温暖水杯计划的3个志愿者(张亚、霍映、王博英)一起前往陈塬小学,经过15小时的车程,我们终于到达目的地了。建造生物慢滤池需要尺寸准确的沙子,我们从清华带了大约15kg的砂到兰州,然后在小学附近到处寻找合适的砂石,接着用筛子筛到合适的大小,并且要清洗到一定的干净度(不能太浊亦不能太清)。

pic4我们从到达农村的当日下午五点做到晚上八点多,再从隔天的清晨五点继续做到中午十二点,可见这个工程非常浩大。我们六个人弄得又饿又湿又累又冷又脏,幸好陈塬小学的老师很热心,给我们吃自己家裡做的家常便饭,还让我们住在教师宿舍。做完BSF后,我们看到进去的浊水变成清澈的样子就很感动、很暖心!我们做到了!可以为农村贡献可以为农村贡献点心力,真的不错!真的非常有意思!

谢谢清华清源协会RISE给我们这次的机会,也感谢中华环境保护基金会提供资金支持,让农村的居民们喝到干净的水!

此外,我们在西北师范大学举办了BSF培训活动,教授西北师范大学、兰州大学、甘肃农业大学的学生有关BSF的原理并且做了小BSF,把BSF的技术传授给更多人,让更多人从这个技术中获益!造福社会!

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