Central to a District 9910-Rotary Foundation Global Grant Water and Catchment Sanitation Project was a new multipurpose building on Maewo Island, Vanuatu, that was handed over to the community at Naone Primary School in a colourful display of cultural dancers in 4 July 2019.
Many Global Grant projects in the Pacific seem to be completed with little fanfare outside the community involved yet are shining examples of the dedication and hard work of Rotarians and locals to improve the lives of many in often remote and very poor communities in the Pacific.  This is one such story worth a read.
 
Picture: The handing over was made in the presence of Director of Education Samuel Katipa,  Past District 9910 Governor Lindsay Ford (in black) and his wife Alison, SHaRM Foundation member/ Project Manager Stuart Friend and other invited guests.
 
The fully funded Rotary International Project (Global Grant No. GG1978647) was approved by The Rotary Foundation in February 2019 and completed in June 2019.  The actual final cost was $AU 51,377.00 (compared to a budgeted $AU71,852) with In Kind Assistance of $AU70,852
 
It was managed by SHaRM Foundation using local builders Son Construction (Renton Boeson) and Village Coordinator (Reynolds Boeson) ensuring all local requirements were being met throughout the building process.
 
Naone Village is situated in the northern tip of Maewo Island some 105 km east of Santo. It is in the Penama Province. It services the one and only airstrip on the island which is located on the plateau above the village.
 
The Naone Primary School caters for 165 pikinini (children) and a growing roll due to the evacuees whom have been relocated into Naone Village from Ambae due to the volcanic eruptions taking place on their island which has rendered their health and safety remaining on Ambae a very high risk. The school has only a few semi-permanent buildings (concrete base but with woven walls and iron roof) and no water storage nor sanitation systems were in place for this village and community.
 
The project provided the first permanent structure to be erected on the school grounds, a Water and Catchment Sanitation complex consisting of a large 40m2 structure with adjacent toilet, sanitation and water collection unit.
 
Preparation of the site at Naone was achieved with plenty of villager assistance from the pikinini upwards.  This contribution by the villagers extended to tremendous input by them bringing coral and sand to the site, collecting and delivering goods shipped for the project to Port Vila and various other inputs including provisioning and feeding the building team.
 
Naone village now caters for many additional permanent Ambae evacuees, with a rise in the number of children this building will also cater for a growing school roll at Naone Primary School.
 
The completed complex also acts as a safe house for villagers during cyclones or earthquakes and has full water reticulation and storage collected from the abundance of water available on Maewo.
 
For the first time, the area of Naone and community as well as the pikinini attending Naone Primary school will have –
 
  • A solid, dry and safe sanitation building complex available to the school (now having two additional spaces within the sanitation complex for use)
  • Safe and strong buildings for future cyclones or other disasters for additional community use when required
  • Well ventilated area with good natural lighting for school and community use that is no longer damp, leaking with poor ventilation for use when weather is inclement
  • The increased space to cater for the growing community plus the increased roll with more pikininis attending from Ambae who have relocated to Maewo Island as a second home
  • The addition to the better facilities offered many library and school books have been provided via SHaRM and Byond Disaster Relief NZ and will be continued to be delivered during 2019 to provide the school with stationery and other items to Naone bolstering their resources within this school and community
  • Safe and hygienic toilet facilities with handwashing facilities have been constructed with this project providing the school with four flush toilets and handwashing facilities for school and community use
  • Adequate water storage facilities enabling regular drawdown by the flush toilets, safe drinking water storage and safe water for handwashing and community use
  • The new facility will also come under the WASH program being implemented in Vanuatu as part of the UNICEF objects and which forms an integral part of this project. SHaRM Foundation has commenced discussions with local NGO Live & Learn to enable material and signboards to be provided ensuring proper use of the toilet facilities, training is made available to all pikinini and the community prior to use and is in line with the WASH Program forming a key part to this project as to developing full training and awareness.
 A very proud and appreciative village displayed their appreciation for this new building by treating the visitors to a spectacular cultural display prior to the dedication and handing over ceremony taking place on the 4th of July 2019.
 
Another successful Global Grant in Vanuatu championed by our PDG Lindsay Ford.
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