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Water filters fill plumbing infrastructure gap in Dominican Republic


Above: Point Park University Environmental Journalism student Megan Bixler smoothes the wet clay of a newly molded water filter.

In the Dominican Republic, people often go without clean water. In rural areas, community members harvest rainwater from their roofs or collect it from the nearest stream or river. And while plumbing exists in cities, many residents still buy bottled water for fear of compromised pipes. Point Park University’s Environmental Journalism students documented the story of Radhames Carela, the master potter at a ceramic water filter factory in El Higuerito, Dominican Republic. The students also traveled to several communities — nearby and remote — to find out how the filters are helping.

Above: Each water filter bears the Wine to Water logo and a unique serial number so that staff can manage quality control of each batch.

Above: Ramon Antonio Rodriguez has been the head teacher at the one-room primary school in Guadarraya for 18 years. He says that his pupils often become ill from the poor water quality.

Above: Wine to Water employees visit the village of Bonagua to survey residents who have been using the water filters for several weeks.