Maintaining CVTL Water Systems on Atauro Island

When setting up a water system in remote areas – it comes with many challenges. Once the system is working – it doesn’t stop there – daily maintenance is key for the system to keep going.  Every week, the Group Maintenance Facilitators (GMF) check the water pipes to the village as well as a designated section of the 45 km of water pipes from the spring. They check that taps are functioning and there are no leaks, and the environment around the tank is clean and safe.

Today, CVTL’s Water and Sanitation team joined the GMF’s in their weekly checking of the pipe installation system. This includes: cleaning the water tank, checking the pipes which are sometimes blocked with stones and sand or damaged.  We tap and shake blocked pipes or replace sections that are blocked or damaged.  We follow the pipes along, tapping and shaking – to keep the water flowing, or replace the pipe if it is completely blocked, said Joaquim CVTL Water and Sanitation technician, who had worked much of the past five years with the people from hamlets of Maker, Atekru, Adara, Arlo, Iliana, Fatu’u and Doru on Atauro Island.

The work for the water system started 5 years ago and benefits 379 households – a total of 1547 people (females – 810 and males -737). There is a total of 18 tanks, 37 public taps and 41,523 metres of pipe were installed in total.

This water system had funding in three phases, and became a reality because of support from:  Australia Red Cross, IFRC, New Zealand Red Cross, British Red Cros and SASCAS.

CVTL and the communities would like to thank all the donors for helping the lives of so many families and solving the arduous task of collecting water every day and making life much easier.

By Januário Freitas Pinto, May 2023

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