Update on Manihiki Atoll, Cook Islands Project
Water is probably the last thing you would expect islanders to run out of, but villagers on Manihiki Atoll in the Cook Islands were recently faced with that very problem. Although they have no dearth of salt water, islanders are entirely dependent on rainwater for drinking, preparing food, and sanitation. Given the fluctuation in rainfall, water is sometimes stored for long periods of time and can become contaminated. With Seacology’s support, the islanders recently installed two UV water purification units and a pump system, which now provides clean water to the atoll. In exchange for Seacology’s support, villagers agreed to create and maintain a 72-acre marine reserve, which now provides valuable protected habitat to local wildlife.
Below, children on Manihiki Atoll celebrate their new water purification system (photo credit: Allan Tuara).