We’re picking up the Village Council Leader, some kind of mayor. He shows us the two ladies. One suffers from TB and others are suspected of it. I think they are siblings. None of them could survive alone. They are too weak. Both have no family anymore, are alone. A water pond is only 190 meters away, but they cannot carry the water in this heat and there is also tuberculosis. The doctor is free for such poor people, but how are they supposed to cover the 7 kilometres? The way to their hut is very demanding even for me and can therefore be classified as “bad”. They are so adorable the two young people. They try to grow some vegetables, but there is simply no water. The well from which they drink is far away and from here they can get drinking water at most. For a garden and thus for the own food supply the strength is simply not sufficient.
We decide to buy a pump for $37,- and a hose for $66,- 200 meters. Seeds and our “garden set” have to be bought as well as our “household set” and for 50 kg each of rice. That’s enough until the first vegetables arrive. For the transport every week to the doctor we leave $ 50,- at Bareebo, they can organize it. Just one day later, the neighbors and the mayor laid the first 100 meters of water pipe.
Conclusion: two real grandmas to love, we are so sorry that they all lost around them. The garden with enough water will supply them more than only just. But above all there is hope again. We will look after you again, you are not all alone.
Date: February 2010
Coverage from Cambodia by David and Bong
This was probably the most successful project. The two sisters made the most of the new water pump. They cultivated all their land and used the seeds we donated. About 85% of the project has already been implemented. The last thing that has not yet been implemented is the transport of one lady with tuberculosis to the doctor and the procurement of her medicine. We have left it to her to decide when it is time for her to go to the doctor. At the moment the whole land of the sisters is already cultivated and the water from the public pond is used with the help of our pump. The sisters grow cucumbers, morning glory, green and long beans, cabbage, eggplant, melons, bananas and lemon grass. They use the self-cultivated food for self-sufficiency and sell the surplus at the market in the city. They don’t know exactly how much money they make with it, but it’s enough to buy new seeds and some other household goods. The five families who installed our pump and pipes also use the water. They use it for bathing, for washing the few clothes and partly also for watering their garden. Bong and I (David) consider whether the two sisters should ideally train their neighbours in: independent living, gardening and housekeeping, because they are very good at these things. Both sisters greet you warmly in Germany and look forward to your next visit. They would like to invite you to dinner, a meal from their garden. (….note from us: invitation accepted!)
On February 18th Bong and I (David) drove to Phnom Kol to our friends, the older ladies. We wanted to know how the pumping project was going. When we came to the house, we saw two little girls taking a bath in the water from the purple pump (see photos). The pump runs splendidly! You know that the water is pumped over more than 100m. This is by far the most comfortable pump I have used in Cambodia and Bong and I will see if it works and maybe use it for our own pond doll project.
I asked the ladies how many families were using the pump and they said that all five families who had helped with the construction were now using the pump daily. The families use the water for bathing, laundry, watering the animals and irrigating the gardens. Fortunately, there is enough water for the whole dry season. With your generous donation, you and your friends have solved one of the biggest problems Cambodians face on land: year-round access to water! Now that the first step has been taken, we need more funds to bring the TB sick old lady to the hospital and buy some medical supplies. Bong helped the ladies to plan their garden and gave some tips. Next time we visit the two very cool old ladies, we hope to see a healthy, green garden.
Our last project visit on this day leads us to the two sisters. As always, the property is very well maintained, the two are very well organized – simply showcase self-suppliers. Unfortunately the two sisters are not able to grow vegetables for their own consumption at the moment. The dry season has Cambodia as every year fully under control, the water reserves are coming to an end and the way to the well is becoming more and more difficult for the two sisters. The pump, which has been supplying water from the nearby pond for years, is at a standstill. The pond has no water. From time to time a neighbour fetches water. In order to be able to use at least a small piece of land for cultivation and own use, we decide to increase the water storage capacity and to have a truck deliver a water load every Friday during the dry season. We are sure that they will get through the dry season and that they will use the new option as always in an exemplary way.
Date: January 2019
Project coordinates: 12.898963, 103.110779