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Water Heroes: Barthelemy & Virgile

Water Heroes: Barthelemy & Virgile

The pandemic has revealed one thing clearly to us: everyday heroes are everywhere. From simple action like playing music to brighten someone's day to saving lives in the ICU and everything in-between, these heroes deserve to be recognized. Our heroes this week (and every week) are the Water for Good staff on the ground in the Central African Republic. 

Story by LeAnne Lavender, Water for Good

Here at Water for Good, we have a staff of 80 Central Africans who are employed to do a variety of tasks. These heroes drill the wells, keep the clean water flowing through well maintenance, transport the team through rough terrain, manage the radio station which broadcasts sanitation and hygiene messages, and too many other tasks to list out. It takes an amazing team to keep Water for Good operating, which provides clean water access to over 880,000 people living in the Central African Republic.

Let's meet two of them!

Meet Barthélemy.

At 29 years old, Barthélemy is on our Maintenance Team, serving as a team leader. He started at Water for Good in 2009 as the installer of the cement slabs that are used on the water pumps. He now drives the Water for Good motorcycle and does shorter maintenance trips to local wells.

Barthélemy believes the biggest advantage to the motorcycle maintenance team is their ability to respond rapidly, which means the wells are repaired faster and the team is more efficient. He enjoys helping out villages more quickly and still be home to help his kids with their homework.

Meet Virgile.

As a part of our supply chain team, he manages our stockroom and is a huge part of our sustainability plan. Virgile makes sure the pump parts are kept available for our maintenance teams in order to keep our water wells working. Fun fact: although not his native tongue, he runs his Excel spreadsheets in English to teach himself English! At home, he speaks French and Sango.

Since the Central African Republic is a landlocked country, getting the parts needed for well maintenance can be difficult. These aren’t parts you can find at your local hardware store. Instead they need to be brought across the border from a bordering country like Cameroon. Virgile helps keep the maintenance team running like a well-oiled drill rig.

These guys change lives for the better on a daily basis. Learn more about the work the Water for Good team is doing in the Central African Republic HERE. Keep the clean water flowing by shopping MudLOVE: every product provides one week of clean water to someone in the CAR. 

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