Blog Action Day 2010 – Engineers Without Borders

by Mark Lovett on October 15, 2010

Blog Action Day is an annual event held every October 15 that unites the world’s bloggers with the aim of sparking a global discussion and driving collective action. This year’s topic is water, and I’m proud to feature the San Diego State University Student Chapter for Engineers Without Borders.

From just a handful of members in 2002, Engineers Without Borders (EWB-USA) has grown to over 12,000 members and has 350+ projects in more than 45 developing countries around the world including water, renewable energy and sanitation.

The San Diego State University (SDSU) chapter was established in 2007 and is now leading their first project, designed to bring clean water to the Tejeras community in Honduras.  As this community lies in a basin at the top of a mountain range used for livestock and agriculture, the quality of the water is unfit for human consumption.

Engineers Without Borders, Tejeras, Honduras

To help remedy this situation, EWB-SDSU has partnered with AJAASSPIB, a local association focused on protecting water resources of all their member communities within the south sector of Pico Bonito.

Engineers Without Borders supports community-driven development programs worldwide through th edesign and implementation of sustainable engineering projects, while fostering responsible leadership.

Project goals include purification of the current creek source water, installation of rainwater catchments, development of a new surface or groundwater source, repare and improve the methods of storage, treatment and distribution, and implement better sanitation.

Project Site Assessment

Each project undertaken by an EWB-USA chapter begins with a site assessment to determine the needs of the community and then devise an implementation strategy.  In January of 2011 the SDSU students will conduct such a site assessment to:

  • Test the water source for bacteria and suspected contaminants
  • Assess the feasibility of distributing water from a more distant water source
  • Determine the availability and quality of the local ground and rain water.
  • Assess the current systems for disinfection, storage and distribution of water as well as sanitation
  • Assess the needs and concerns of the local community

You Can Help!

Implementation is scheduled for the Summer of 2011, and the chapter is committed to the community for at least five years to ensure the project is being monitored & maintained, and that everything is working for the community as planned.

The overall cost of this project is estimated to be $29,265 (Assessment – $5,525 and Implementation – $23,740) with $16,740 still needed to complete funding.  For more information email or call (303) 772-2723.

If you would like to support this project, donations are highly appreciated.  You can always donate online or send a check made payable to Engineers Without Borders San Diego State University and send to:

Engineers Without Borders
Mail Code 1326
College of Engineering
San Diego State University
5500 Campanile Drive
San Diego, CA 92182-1326

Engineers Without Borders are true Global Patriots!

A very special thanks goes out to three members of Engineers Without Borders: Greg Hawkins – Treasurer, Phillip Patague – Outreach Committee, and Jan Vianzon – Publicity Committee for their help in providing background material for this article.

{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

RealTaiji October 15, 2010 at 11:03 pm

Very noble indeed. I am also tickled by the long abbreviations, hoping that there’s a way to say “AJAASSPIB!”


GlobalPatriot October 16, 2010 at 3:22 pm

We had a good laugh while discussing the project, as no one could come up with an easy way to pronounce AJAASSPIB, though they do great work!


Dave Lucas October 15, 2010 at 3:28 pm

Way to go! Water is life! Here’s a link to my article about water. Thanks for helping us spread the word!


GlobalPatriot October 16, 2010 at 3:24 pm

It was so gratifying to see the thousands of blog posts highlighting the issue of providing clean water to millions around the world. Thanks for providing the link to your article!


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