Bolivia is a landlocked country in South America and is considered the least developed country of the subcontinent. There are only about 11 million people living on an area, which is about three times the size of Germany. Since Bolivia gained independency from Spain in 1825, much of its subsequent history was affected by nearly 200 coups and countercoups. A democratic government was established in 1982, but the leaders had to face difficult problems like deep-seated poverty, social unrest and illegal drug production.
Achocalla, with its 21 villages, belongs to the direct catchment area of the metropolises La Paz and El Alto and therefore shows a rapid increase in population. There are only limited sources of water in this area. They are combined and – thanks to the gradient – can be transported through water pipes to the cities. In some places, water wells were created to deliver water out of a depth of 3 meters. Because of intensive agriculture and animal breeding, as well as because of the missing drain systems for the wastewater, the ground water sources in Achocalla are organically contaminated (and therefore have no drinking water quality). This is also the cause for the relatively high rate of gastro-intestinal diseases in the region.
The pilot project “drinking water for Achocalla” should present a solution statement of how to improve the water quality in the project area. At the same time, different possibilities for interventions should be developed, which can also be implemented in other rural areas in the region.
The project consists of two main activities:
- Foundation and support of a small business in Achocalla, where water filters for drinking water are produced out of local material in order to use them in households of the Achocalla region.
- Construction and business operation of a water kiosk, for the drinking water supply of restaurants and tourists in the area around the lagoon.
2011 – 2012