Fiji Relief Project Day 8

This turned out to be one of the busiest days of the week. Aisake and I spent the night on Kiou Island after giving out the fishing gear. Yesterday the villagers were discussing their need for water. At present their water supply is available for ½ hour every morning. People must fill whatever buckets or tubs they have during that brief period. That’s all the fresh water they will have for a 24 hour period for any purpose.

The spring that previously supplied the village totally dried up over a year ago, so they are dependent upon rain runoff to fill their main reservoir tank. There has been a drought for the past several months, despite rain on the main island. There is a reliable spring on the side of the island opposite the village. That is the spring I walked over to see yesterday.

I mentioned it should not be too difficult to bring water by pipe from that spring to the reservoir tank. We need to know the distance of the water source from the tank and the height of the hill the pipes would have to come over. I said I would try to get funding for such a project since it is of such vital importance to the well-being of the villagers. My comments were taken to the chairman of the village committee who asked to meet with me this morning.

After breakfast, Aisake and I went to meet with this man. He surprised me by beginning his discussion saying, “Glory to God. He alone is worthy of all praise and honor.” He then went on to relay the story of the Good Samaritan in great detail, relating the plight of the Samaritan to the plight of Kiou. Their number one need is for water to reach the village. Any help we could provide would be extremely beneficial.

I replied with the tale of the woman who touched the hem of Jesus’ garment. She had a desperate need and sought help from the one source who could provide for her. We need to seek that same source. That is what I will do when I get home.

This is definitely not the kind of discussion I would have with a government official in the States.

The village will measure the distance from the spring to the tank so we know the length of pipe we need. They will see if the government can tell them the elevation of the hill behind the village so we know how high the water must be pumped to begin an ongoing siphon effect to draw the water to the tank. Then we can determine the funds we need to raise. The villagers can lay the pipe and make all necessary connections.

We also discussed the medical outreach we plan to do in December. The village definitely wants to be included in that project as well. I hope we can bring an engineer with us who can help determine how best to do the water project, should we raise the necessary funds by then.

Immediately after that meeting, we had a very pleasant boat ride back to Vanua Levu Island. We drove to Aisake’s house and had a snack before heading into Savusavu to buy relief supplies for one more family. We delivered those supplies and picked up the remaining water filters which we then took to the two churches that had not yet received theirs. I put one together as a demonstration and we headed back to Aisake’s house for our evening meal.

Tomorrow we drive over to the north end of the Island where we will inspect our bee hives and meet with Chuck, the farmer who is taking care of them. We’ll discuss the December outreach and the training needs of the beekeepers around that area. This is where we did such extensive training last year.

Then we’ll drive over to Dreketi to meet with the pastor of the church where we did last year’s outreach. We’ll do some planning for next year and give out the very few lures which we kept back for the fishermen in that area.

Thanks again for your ongoing prayers. Jesus has been so present during these past days.