7 February 2017 – Progress Update

Since the last update on January 20th progress has been made on the water project, building repair, and painting.

Water Project

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Budhu tests the first tap

By our last update on January 20th most of the pipe had been laid, and a trial run of the tap at the men’s quarters was successful.

Since then the pipeline has been laid to the community center and all they way to the women’s quarters (over 100 meters). Taps have been installed, and bases created to stabilize the structure and to direct excess water to drainage paths which will eventually lead to a pond.

The stand for the water tank has been completed, and the motor for the pump fully installed with a locked housing to boot. On February 4th it was painted yellow, and we are going to bring in an artist to paint a design such as flowers or vines as well.

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There are now 6 working taps, located at the men’s quarters, kitchen building, community center, and women’s quarters. We will add one or two more taps at the women’s quarters; we hadn’t realized a few more people were living on the opposite side, and want to prevent them having to carry the water very far.

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Kitchen Building Repair

The final wall of the kitchen building needed to be replaced because it was beyond repair. We are happy to announce this work is finally in progress. A new wall has been built behind it, and the old one is being carefully disassembled.

It’s a very delicate area to work on because of the damage. The repairs are being made carefully to prevent collapse.

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This damage is right next to the wall that’s been replaced.

Small but Mighty Improvements

New seating has been added around several trees and at the community center. We are also continuing to install the village’s first electric lights where they will be most beneficial. So far we have one outside the kitchen building, several in the community center foyer, and more inside the community center. Within one day of installing those lights the villagers found and killed 4 rats inside! They wouldn’t have been able to see them otherwise. Since rats are notorious for spreading disease, it will be good to combat any pest problems with the simple addition of a few lights.

The biggest change in the last week has been the fresh paint! This began by repainting the temple, the prioritization of which is tenement to their spiritual commitments here. The kitchen building was next, then the water tower, and today the painter started on the community center. An artist also arrived today to repaint the figures on the temple, and add his own additions.

The environment now looks completely changed as a result of the paint. People from other villages are coming here just to see what is going on. All of this work has been lifting their spirits, offering real encouragement. They used to hold performances all the time, but the last 25 years have been difficult for many of them, and they can’t remember the last time they held a concert. Lately they have been talking again about the plays they used to perform, their kirtan (drum) team, and their costumes. Today a small group gathered to play a song. Everyone was smiling. We drew a small audience, and even those who continued working had great smiles on their faces. It’s a good thing we are all doing, and we thank you for your help.

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