Pat Kasuda—Testing the waters

A member of the Glen Burnie Rotary Club, Pat Kasuda travelled nearly 2,000 miles to assist in the completion of a water project in the village of Santa Clara within the municipality of San Rafael, El Salvador. The mission: to bring clean water to 250 homes.

'It really made me realize how much emphasis we place on material things and how we can take our commodities such as clean water for granted,' says Pat.

In Santa Clara, the average family spends two to four hours securing water each day, and residents must rely on a water supply from hand-dug wells that are often contaminated with bacteria and farm run-off.

'Our role was to review the plans for the project, including the construction of the filtration system, pumping storage tank and piping systems,' Pat explains.

During the trip, Pat and her travel colleagues slept on cots covered with mosquito netting and dined on local foods like plankton, rice, beans and chicken prepared on an outdoor stove. 'The people in Santa Clara live very humble lives, mostly on the food they grown on their farmland,' she says. '[They] were so grateful for even the smallest things.'

Funding for the project was established through the rotary club, donations and local fundraisers. Pat says the group hopes to raise an additional $100,000 to complete the project.

Charlestown Resident Pat Kasuda