Dartmoor Tree Surgeons joined forces with South West Water and other contractors to raise money for WaterAid at Meldon reservoir last month.
Twenty-eight volunteers walked the length of the reservoir on 25 November to fill containers with 20 litres (20kg) of water from the stream before carrying them back – a journey of about three miles.
As a keen Dartmoor walker Graham jumped at the chance to get away from his desk for a day, even if it meant carrying a very heavy rucksack over a wet and cold moorside.
However, this was nothing compared to the challenge faced by millions of women and girls as young as eight, across the world, who make similar trips every single day, carrying water on their heads weighing up to 20kg – the same as the average UK airport baggage allowance.
The event was started by the Mayor of West Devon, Christine Marsh, who also took part dressed as a……. toilet (not your normal mayoral attire).
Participants at Meldon Village Hall
Tea, coffee, hot dogs and cakes were provided at Meldon village hall where Roger Full of Interserve Construction Services gave a talk about his recent WaterAid Supporters visit to Uganda.
A total of £4,300 was raised by the 34 companies, all South West Water suppliers, who supported the event. All the money will be used by WaterAid to provide safe water, hygiene and sanitation in Monze, a province of Zambia.
The event was organised by H5O, South West Water’s engineering delivery alliance.
Andy Woolston, from H5O, said: “By completing this challenge, we hope to raise awareness of the 748 million people who lack access to safe, clean water and sanitation as well as raising as much money as possible to help WaterAid address this injustice.”
Vanessa Ashton, Water Industry Partnerships Manager at WaterAid, said: “We’re very grateful for the support from South West Water and the H5O alliance.
“Gaining access to basic necessities really does transform lives; improving health, education and livelihoods and forming the first, essential step in overcoming poverty. The amazing support we receive is vital as we work towards a world where everyone, everywhere has clean water to drink and a safe place to go to the toilet.”
For more information, about WaterAid visit www.wateraid.org
Graham labouring under a rucksack of water (but still smiling)