Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka: USAID and AmeriCares provide safe water to Ampara communities

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ULLA/POTTUVIL, AMPARA DISTRICT, 2008-11-17 - USAID and the international relief organization AmeriCares marked the completion of the Pottuvil/Ulla Water Treatment Plant and Ulla Supply System at the opening on November 17, 2008. The plant will give the residents of these coastal villages safe and clean water for the first time since the tsunami devastated their communities.

USAID Mission Director Rebecca Cohn officially opened the water treatment plant, along with AmeriCares Country Director Lisa Hilmi, and Minister of Water Supply and Drainage, Hon. Al-Haj A.L.M. Athaullah, M.P.

With the introduction of advanced water treatment technology and equipment, the new system can provide 4,000 liters per minute of clean water, benefiting over 40,000 residents, as well as local businesses and hotels. In addition to safeguarding the health of the communities, it will contribute to stabilizing the tourist industry and help boost the local economy.

Thanks to an additional grant by AmeriCares, USAID has been able to complete its investment in wells, transmission lines, the treatment plant and a large elevated storage tank. The additional contribution has also allowed the National Water Supply & Drainage Board to work with the local users to connect the supply directly to their homes, schools, hotels and workplaces. The new water treatment plant and distribution system have been designed in partnership with the National Water Supply & Drainage Board of Sri Lanka, who has offered invaluable input into the project.

When the water was turned on in local schools that day, students stood in line to fill their tall glasses with fresh water. Word spread quickly, and in only a short time, residents of the community were out in the street, excitedly discussing this new improvement.