Thirst for knowledge, not for





History Logs

Project Description

Region: North America

Country: Mexico

Location: Cd. Juarez Chihuahua

Total Budget: $33,750

Areas of Focus: Water and sanitation, Basic education and literacy

Imagine one of your beloved kids attending a school that has not sufficient water pressure to sustain safe drinking water and sanitation/hygiene at the restrooms.

The following project will detail the desperate situation of 1800 students that live this experience every day.


Thirst for knowledge... not for water!

***The message behind the project title is that we want the students to think and focus at the class room instead of thinking about the need of water.


• Area of focus: Water and sanitation & Basic education and literacy.

• Target community: "Escuela Secundaria Estatal #19" located at Cd. Juarez Chihuahua, Mexico. This school is located in one of the city's border communities. Because of its location, this community has a serious water problem.

• Objective: To ensure that students and teachers from the school will have sustainable access to water and sanitation by:

1. Providing access to safe drinking water, both in supply and quality.

2. Providing sufficient water supply to improve sanitation and hygiene at the restrooms.

3. Providing sufficient water supply to improve the evaporative coolers during the summer.


The school supports in two shifts a total of 1800 students and 70 teachers/administrative personnel. The problems described below affect everyone in the same way:

1. Lack of drinking water, both in supply and quality:

• There is only one drinking water fountain (with 4 valves) to fulfill the needs of the entire school. All students go to the break/recess and when it is time to go back to the class room, all the students head towards the only drinking water fountain they have and must to wait in the queue for their turn to drink water. Some of the students have to go back to the class room completely thirsty so they have to ask for permission to go out during class time to drink some water and satisfy their thirst. This of course is keeping them from focusing on class so this is definitely affecting their learning process.

2. Insufficient water supply for sanitation. At both, men and women restrooms:

• There are only two working restrooms, one for ladies and one for the boys. The school has 2 restrooms for ladies and 2 for boys, but due to the low water pressure the school is able to partially sustain only one working restroom for ladies and one for the boys. This represents a huge sanitation problem since the school supports a total of 900 students per shift and there are only 4 toilets per restroom. Once more, the students must ask for permission during class time to go to the restroom, thus missing focus and most of the time missing important school lessons.

• Only 1 out of 4 sinks has enough water supply to allow the students to wash their hands. Due to the low water pressure the students can only use one sink to wash their hands after going to the restroom. The students must wait in the queue for their turn if they want to wash their hands. Some of the kids just avoid waiting in the queue sacrificing sanitation for playing time. This situation can lead to health problems and disease spreading. The students may go back to the class room with dirty hands and also they may go for lunch and use the common areas and school equipment.

• During high water demand hours, there is not enough water supply to flush the toilets. This is a huge problem for the school. There are periods of time during the day when the water pressure is not enough to even flush the toilets. This situation is the perfect condition for disease spread. The students have to deal with the remaining left overs from other students because the toilets don't have sufficient water to flush every time a student use them. Bacteria, terrible bad smell and ugly looking conditions are a daily issue for these restrooms.

3. Insufficient water supply to sustain the evaporative coolers in the summer when the temperature may raise up to a max of 108°F (42 °C):

• There are 12 classrooms in a second floor and the water supply is not enough to support the evaporative coolers for these classrooms. Up to 900 students are directly affected by the extreme hot conditions. The students suffer De-hidratation because of the extreme hot conditions, they can't focus at the classroom and somteimes they are absent for days because of sickness.

4. Insufficient water supply for watering green areas and vegetation:

• No green areas can be sustained.


Install the following equipment:

• Four Rotoplas water storage tanks with a capacity of 10,000 liter each tank.

• E.SYBOX electronic water pressure system (2.1 HP).

• Water filtration system.

• Floor preparation for the water tanks.

• Security room for the equipment.

• General plumbing.

The low water pressure problem will be solved by having a water storage of 40,000 liter. The daily water consumption was calculated between 60,000 to 70,000 liter per day. By having a 40,000 liter storage will ensure that there will be sufficient water for the high demand hours. The water tanks will then re-fill during class time and over night.

Once the water supply is secured, the water pressure system will ensure the minimum water pressure for the entire school so every drinking water fountain, sink, toilet and evaporative cooler will have sufficient water pressure/supply to properly work.

The filtration system will ensure the quality for the drinking water fountains. The evaporative coolers and the restrooms will NOT receive filtered water. This strategy will support the working life of the filters.

The general plumbing will be checked and repaired for leaks and rust.

A security room will be built to lock the equipment. This will prevent robbery and vandalism.

THIS IS A PROVEN SOLUTION THAT IS CURRENTLY WORKING IN OTHER SCHOOLS. We are taking advantage of the lessons learned from similar projects.


1. Start with the community: The school's principal and their staff did identify the need and developed the solution.

2. Encourage local ownership: It is a true sign of a project's success when community members embrace the project as their own.

3. Provide training: Special training on equipment maintenance will be provided to the school's maintenance crew.

4. Buy local: Local suppliers will be used to implement the project.

5. Find local funding: The project will be sustained with the government budget through the school.

6. Measure your success: The school's leadership will follow up on the project's results.


Club President: Pedro Perez - pedro.leobardo@gmail.com

Rotary Foundation Chair: Miguel Rodriguez - miguel.a.rodriguez.orona@gmail.com

Club Secretary: Gloria Angulo - gangulo@tdedelnorte.com

Primary Host Partner

District: 4110

Rotary Club of: Juárez Integra

Primary Contact: Miguel Angel Rodriguez

Email: miguel.a.rodriguez.orona@gmail.com

Primary International Partner

District: 5520

Rotary Club of: Albuquerque Del Norte

Primary Contact: Kim Helm

Email: kim_maguire@ml.com

Project Status

Need $10,834
This project needs to receive some pledges to go to the next level. Please check the "Financing" tab to see the list of current pledges. Once the amount pledged is equal to the project budget, the status of the project will be automatically changed to "Fully Pledged".
Click here to pledge support for this project.

Project listed for the 2018-19 Rotary Year.

Proposed Financing

Existing Contributions Towards This Project





Juárez Integra (4110)





Albuquerque Del Norte (5520)





Albuquerque (5520)





Remaining Amount to Raise

Additional Club Contribution (Needed) - Add a contribution




Amount Requested from The Rotary Foundation






Note: as of July 1, 2015 there is a 5% additional support fee for cash contributions. This fee does not appear in the financials above because it does not apply if the funds are sent directly to the project account (without going through TRF, and therefore without Paul Harris credit). Clubs sending their cash contribution to TRF must be aware they will have to send an additional 5%.

Project Supporting Documents

Project Photos

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Go to the administration page to upload photos.

History Log Entries


by Miguel Angel Rodriguez

System Entry: Creation of project page.


by Miguel Angel Rodriguez

System Entry: Pledge of $1,000 by J. Ronald Salley of the Rotary Club of Albuquerque, District 5520.

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