Basseterre, St. Kitts (SKNIS): Eighteen schools across the twin-island Federation have benefited from the recently launched USAID and Caribbean Community (CARICOM) Climate Change Centre (CCCCC) Funded Water Security Project.
The USAID and Caribbean Community (CARICOM) Climate Change Centre (CCCCC) Funded Water Security Project in vulnerable schools is very timely in helping the Federation’s learning institutions to respond to the water scarcity issues and building resilience to climate change in St. Kitts and Nevis, says Minister of Education, the Honourable Jonel Powell.
Minister Powell was at the time speaking at the closing ceremony for a climate change adaptation project entitled “Ensuring Water Security in Vulnerable Schools in St. Kitts and Nevis Through Onsite Water Storage Capacity” on October 16.
The project was sponsored by USAID and the Caribbean Community Climate Change Centre (CCCCC) and implemented by the Ministry of Environment, Ministries of Public Works and the Ministries of Education across the twin-island Federation.
The Minister noted that the project is even timelier because of the COVID-19 Pandemic, which has created increased demands on schools to provide water for sanitation purposes.
He added that the Federation has been experiencing drought-like conditions over the past few years to the extent where rationing programmes were put in place in some areas.
“Notwithstanding, there are days of high consumption and usage, and customers experience extremely low pressure and unplanned service interruptions,” he said. “These interruptions impact the schools in significant ways as classes would have to be suspended under such conditions.”
Minister Powell said that the main aim of the project is to enhance water security and resilience to climate change through the installation of the water storage tanks and pumps in several areas.
He added that priority will be given to schools that are located on the water-stressed communities.
The project has provided storage tanks and supporting pumps to schools that are in need of backup water supplies.
“Therefore, this project has done two things. It has provided a backup water supply for schools, which ensures that classes are not interrupted because of disruptions in the water supply at the particular schools and secondly, it has provided water storage tanks to schools and daycare centres to ensure that water is readily available at these institutions,” said the Minister.
The Minister of Education stated that some 18 educational facilities in St. Kitts and Nevis have benefited from the US $205,000 Climate Change Adaption Project aimed at ensuring that water is readily available at the learning institutions.
“The Climate Change Adaption Project will address the scarcity of water faced by these institutions,” said Minister Powell. “The project has retrofitted existing cisterns in some areas and installed the water storage tanks in others. These institutions include nurseries, daycare centres, preschools, primary schools and secondary schools.”
The institutions that have benefited include the McKnight Day Care Centre, the Industrial Site Day Care Centre, the Cayon Nursery; the Tabernacle Day Care Centre; the Saddlers Nursery; the Sandy Point Preschool; the Sandy Point Nursery; Charlestown Preschool; the Dr. William Connor Primary School; the Beach Allen Primary School; the Cayon Primary School; the Dieppe Bay Primary School; the Charlestown Primary School; the St. James Primary School; Cicely Integrated Primary School; Ivory Walters Primary School; Cayon High School and Charlestown High.