Costa Rica Initiative
In 2019, Gravity Water launched the Costa Rica Initiative in partnership with Live Globally, to expand water relief efforts to communities throughout the Nation. Gravity Water worked with local companies and communities to create an impact that could be managed, maintained, and sustained by the local communities throughout the future. With Costa Rica receiving a large amount for rainfall each year, and with rainwater harvesting being a common cultural practice for communities throughout the country, Gravity Water had a natural and welcomed approach to providing clean drinking water to communities in need.
Gravity Water first broke ground in Costa Rica through a partnership with Live Globally, through the installation of a Gravity Water system at a public school in the Los Planes community of Bahia Drake, Costa Rica.
Escuela Los Planes
In Los Planes and most rural regions of Costa Rica, access to safe drinking water and freshwater resources that lack contamination of dangerous pollutants are not commonplace. Due to the lack of proper and advanced infrastructure, pollutants, such as human waste, commonly enter groundwater sources through faulty septic systems; this is the number one cause of water-borne illness amongst children globally. In addition to human waste, other pollutants, such as chemicals and animal waste from agriculture, water-based parasites, and common bacteria are largely prevalent in most coastal community groundwater sources, since they are usually the lowest point in the watershed.
Though manny communities throughout Costa Rica have access to large amounts of fresh water year-round, accessing water can be challenging. This is due to the dependency of electricity-based pumping and infrastructure to move water from the source to the place of need. Power outages are common in southern Costa Rica, and with Los Planes’ remote location, repairing electrical grids can leave communities without electricity for long periods.
The Escuela Los Planes Living for Water Project was developed through support of Live Globally, who was the primary funding partner and on-the-ground contact for the project, and through the assistance of local community members in Los Planes, Costa Rica.
The Escuela Los Planes Living for Water Project is currently providing the local school of 50 students plus staff in with safe water access through its 3,550-liter gravity water system which will provide the school a maximum of 750 liters of EPA-rated safe drinking water each day.
The Escuela Los Planes Living for Water Project will benefit the students and staff of Escuela Los Planes throughout the future, with a system lifespan of decades, requiring only minimal maintenance and filter replacement costs of less than $50/year.