BENEFITING: Foundation For Lake Chapala Charities Inc
OVER 600 CASES OF KIDNEY FAILURE!!!!!
Just 39 kilometers from our idealic Ajijic, in the Municipality of Poncitlan, is the village of San Pedro Itzican. From there, five other smaller villages extend along the lake. These villages include La Pena, Agua Caliente, La Cuesta, Chalpicote, La Zapotera and Santa Maria de la Joya. You will not find them on Google Maps and yet the population between San Pedro and the other villages is estimated to be over 12,000 people. Over two thirds of this population is under 18. The people of these villages live their lives without many of the conveniences that we take for granted. For some villages there is no public transportation. For others there is no plumbing, no sewer or septic system, no garbage collection service, or no gas for cooking or heating. Malnutrition is widespread. Education is extremely lacking. The average education ends after the third grade. Now they no longer have access to clean water. There are wells in these villages and the water has high, high levels of bacteria and it is now been discovered that their water also contains, pesticides as well as arsenic and other heavy metals. As a direct result of this water to date, over 600 people have renal (kidney) failure. This is a dire situation and will only continue to harm this population unless action is taken NOW. There are a few amazing efforts underway to improve the quality of life for these people. Todd Stong Ph.D. has been working in this community for over 16 years. He and a small crew have corrected water flow issues in one village and designed and built a sewage treatment plant for another among other things. He has tirelessly petitioned the local government to improve the quality of life for these people. Other concerned citizens are sourcing point of use water filters that are just now being distributed within these communities. Another local couple have formed an organization to improve the quality of life through a variety of programs, providing education, clothing, transportation and to improve sanitation, among other things. All of these efforts are needed, but most urgent is addressing their water issue. It's unknown how many more people will go into renal failure and it is usually not diagnosed until it is at stage five of five stages). Dr. Stong has put forth a multi pronged response but financial assistance is needed more than anything to accomplish this in a timely manner. This multi-pronged approach includes:
1. Solicit donations from individuals and bottled water companies to provide immediate bottled water.
2. Distribute in-home or multi-home filter systems.
3. Build purification systems near sites of the existing wells to fill water bottles specifily for drinking.
4. Build pumping stations that will utilize the relatively clean water from Lake Chapala. The lake does not contain the hazardous levels of metals or bacteria that are found in the wells.
5. Lastly, funds are needed to do routine urinalysis testing and testing the water sources for contaminates.
All of these efforts need your help. The good people of Lake Chapala have a long history of contributing to the welfare of the local population. This is, I believe, well beyond our means and we need your urgent support. All funds raised here will support the water projects.