Even as I was busy handing over two Rotary service projects in distant Gelephu, our Club President and Director of Community Services were soaking in the limelight at the Babesa Lower Secondary School, on the same day, where they were simultaneously handing over another of our service projects – supply and installation of two filtered and UV treated safe drinking water systems.
The Babesa LSS Principal flanked by our Club President and Community Services Director during the hand-over of the 1st of the two filtered and UV treated safe drinking water to the school.
The school Principal takes over the 2nd drinking water station from the Club official
School children drinking from the safter drinking water station
The supply and installation of safe drinking water stations also included a plastic water storage tank
This project funded by the Rotary Club of Kushiro, Japan will be the last of the water supply projects that we will do in urban schools. During our last weekly Meeting held on Friday the 9th June, 2017, the Club decided that we will no longer support water supply projects in the urban schools. The rationale behind this decision is that the parents in urban schools are financially competent enough to contribute small sums towards the well-being and health of their children. This we believe is not true of parents in the rural schools.
This year, the Rotary Club hopes to be doing 5-6 safe drinking water supply projects in the schools. They will all be for schools in the rural areas.
In addition to safe drinking water supplies, the Rotary Club of Thimphu was hoping to contribute significantly in strengthening the SEN (Special Education Needs) schools in the country. In fact we already have one of the world’s leading authorities on the subject willing to undertake a study and produce a road map on how to go about doing this – in Bhutan’s current 14 SEN schools spread across the country. All free of professional fees! Once the study is done and a road map is charted out, the Rotary Club of Thimphu would then promote the proposal to its 35,000 Clubs and 1.3 million Members around the world, to take up the implementation of the proposals.
Unfortunately, getting the bureaucracy to do their job is like trying to nudge the Mt. Everest – solidly immobile and stoically clueless. No amount of pushing and goading has worked – it is as if we have some self-interest in it. Come to think of it – may be it is the lack of self-interest that is hindering the project’s progress.