The Richardson Center provides people friendly investments in Myanmar. On July 3, we were able to see exactly how those investments have impacted the lives of people in the villages. After a two-hour car ride and a two-hour boat ride down narrow canals, we arrived at one of the villages where a water well had been built with the help of the Richardson Center. There are approximately 1,000 people living in the village and they had previously used lake water but now thanks to the well, they can get clean water. When we visited the village, it was the rainy season, which means the roads are flooded and become canals where only boats can travel. During the monsoon season villagers collect rain water in giant ceramic urns for their household needs, but during the dry season, the well is essential for the villagers. It was truly a community project because everyone in the community had helped in some way to dig the well.
Photo 1: Villagers who helped to dig the well demonstrate how it works
Photo 2: A well on hold until after the monsoon season
In another community back down the canal, another well had been drilled. Because the village is on the sea, they had been unsuccessful at finding clean, unsalinated water and had to drill several times. The well has now been drilled but the foundation cannot be built until after the rainy season ends.
The “rivers” that we traveled through to get to the villages completely dry up in the dry season and are then used as roads for motorbikes and cars. Transportation is very difficult as the walking paths are pure mud during this season and travel on the rivers takes a long time. These villages rely on rice and bean crops for their livelihoods. The wells will make a major difference in their lives and they were very grateful for the Richardson Center donation.