Young Bank residents now enjoy potable water Print E-mail
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Thursday, 18 April 2013 00:00

Hon. Godwin Hulse, Minister of Rural Development (2nd from right) and Mr Alberto August (far right) inaugurate the Young Bank water projectResidents of Young Bank,  a community on the outskirts of Camalote Village in the Cayo District, now enjoy quality, potable water twenty four hours  a day thanks to a Social Investment Fund (SIF) and Belize Water Services Limited (BWSL) project, which aims to improve and expand water supply to rural communities in Belize.

The project was officially inaugurated on Sunday, 14 April, during a brief ceremony in Young Bank.

Young Bank is located about ¼ mile on the Valley of Peace Road off the Western Highway  and is a relatively new settlement behind Camalote Village with a population of approximately 470 Belizean residents, who were original immigrants from the neighboring Central American republics of Guatemala, El Salvador and Honduras.

Prior to the project, the residents suffered immensely from the lack of potable water especially during the dry season, when they had to rely on outdoor water reservoirs and delivery water trucks.

The project, which was completed last month, was implemented by SIF in collaboration with the Belize Water Services Limited (BWSL) and financed by the Government at a total cost of $268,237.56. Of this amount, $263,137.56 was funded through a government loan from the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB), and $5,100.00 was provided by the Young Bank community as connection fees.

The project included the installation of 2.95miles of distribution lines to provide potable water to the entire community. The installation of meters will regularize the use of water and will assist in the control and monitoring of water usage. 

In addition to meeting the Government’s Millennium Development Goal (MDG) target  # 7 (c)  which aims to “Reduce by half, between 1990 and 2015, the proportion of people without sustainable access to safe drinking water and basic sanitation”, the project will reduce the incidences of water borne diseases and improve the quality of health of the residents. 

Camalote Village is an old community which existed before the construction of the George Price (Western) Highway in the 1940’s.  The previous mode of travel was through the Belize River.  The Statistical Institute of Belize 2010 Population Census puts the population at 2,566 with 1,278 males and 1,288 females.  The Village is connected to the Belize Water Services Limited (BWSL) lines and this made it easier for the expansion of water supply to nearby Young Bank. 

The guest speaker at the ceremony was Hon. Godwin Hulse, Minister of Labour, Local Government, Rural Development, Immigration and National Emergency Management.  Other speakers included representatives of the Social Investment Fund, BWSL and the Camalote Village Council.