December 1997

31st December 1997

This Month's Progress on the Water Projects:

Last month we reported that work was starting on the repair of Chenhe irrigation channel. With winter fast approaching, the villagers were working against the clock to finish the repairs before the freezing weather set in. The project is now completed, with over 400m of channel reinforced to prevent leaking and guarantee sufficient water for the paddy land of Chenhe and nearby villages. Funding came from Misereor, and the villagers also made a small contribution according to the size of their paddy plots.

Chenhe 3 Zu Drinking and Irrigation Water Project

Since the agreement with DORS was signed at the end of October, the villagers have completed the construction of the two drinking water tanks and are preparing to buy metal piping. The people of 3 Zu are particularly excited about their new water supply, and each time we visit the village they set off fire crackers and paste red paper couplets to the walls to welcome us.

Tough Work at Banyang

The villagers at Banyang are still battling on the hillside to dig the water storage tank for their drinking and irrigation water supply project funded by the British Chamber of Commerce. The tank will be 800m3, and half buried in the hillside. As there are many large boulders that need to be blasted before being moved by hand, people are finding the work hard going, especially as the Water Conservancy Bureau advisor recommends they dig an extra 0.5 m into the earth and rock to stabilise the tank. Richard Anderson of DORS went to Beijing last month to show the BCCC some slides of the progress at Banyang. When the Yi Minority people of Banyang heard, they asked Richard to take a big pot of sorghum wine to the meeting to thank the BCCC members for their support. The home-made sweet wine is drunk direct from the earthenware pot through a bamboo straw, and went down well at the meeting.

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