SWW gets its PAWS even deeper into Africa!
South West Water Maintenance Manager and North Devon resident Mark Ison is about to embark on the trip of a lifetime, investing his energy and expertise in PAWS, (Partners for Water and Sanitation); a non-profit initiative set up by the UK government to help ensure that African countries have clean water and adequate sanitation.
On the 1 July, Mark will be travelling to Abuja in central Nigeria, and then on to the small state of Ekiti, in the south west of the country. On arrival, he will be investigating the failed or failing water supply systems in a number of medical centres that are currently resorting to hand pumps and buckets. Mark will be working with local government and other organisations to provide secure and safe sanitation and water supplies that can be effectively maintained in the future. His work will minimise the risk of water-borne diseases and help save lives.
Mark became involved with PAWS after hearing about the work of Scientific Manager Chris Underwood, a South West Water employee who has already made several trips to the Benue State on behalf of PAWS. Mark was very impressed with Chris's experiences and asked South West Water to put his name forwards for PAWS, so that he could donate his invaluable skills.
Mark said: "Having seen some of the facilities in Africa (or lack of them) and the consequences, I felt it was an opportunity to make a difference for people who do without the services we take for granted on a day–to-day basis."
Mark has worked for South West Water for 27 years and is currently the area Maintenance Manager for Barnstaple, Exeter and Paignton. He has lived in the Westcountry since 1960 and resides in Northam, just outside Bideford.
South West Water Operations Director, Stephen Bird, said: "We are delighted to support this kind of initiative, which has the potential to save lives and dramatically improve the quality of life for some of the poorest communities in the world. This is one important way in which South West Water can give something back and help communities get access to safe, clean water."
Published: 20 June 2006
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