CSR: Shapoorji Pallonji and Habitat for Humanity Tool Bank making drinking water safe in flood hit Kerala

KOCHI: Habitat for Humanity India, a leading not-for-profit housing organization is reaching out to 1446 families in the Ernakulum district of Kerala with tool kits for safe drinking water. The tool kit has all the equipment to clean wells and other drinking water sources contaminated during the floods two months ago. This first-of-its-kind initiative, taken by Habitat for Humanity India in association with the Shapoorji Pallonji group, addresses the basic requirement of deficit of clean drinking water in the state.

“We assessed that when floodwater mixed with drinking water sources, the need of the hour was to ensure clean, contamination free drinking water for all families. The tool kit was devised as a part of the rehabilitation efforts by Habitat for Humanity India, for the residents of Kerala. We thank the Shapoorji Pallonji Group for supporting our rehabilitation process,” said Rajan Samuel, Managing Director, Habitat for Humanity India.

The equipment in the tool bank include a 3 KVA generator set, jet pump, 1 HP suction pump, a 500 liter Syntex tank, suction pipe and other cleaning materials. In the last two months, the tool kits have benefitted over 20 families. The set has cleaned wells, cleared out the muck and prevented the formation of germ infested areas, restored pathways and entry roads to societies.

“The Shapoorji Pallonji Group is committed to benefit communities, and we are working closely with Habitat for Humanity India in empowering our fellow citizens with the tools to provide safe drinking water. The innovative and efficient tool kits has helped families quickly restore access to basic amenities,” said Ms. Zarine Commissarait, Head, Group CSR, Shapoorji Pallonji Group.

The Story of Vincent & Family

Vincent Naduvileveetil (55) was diagnosed with a heart condition a few years ago. Post an intense operation to treat his condition, he had to quit his job loading and unloading at a construction site due to the intensity of physical labour. Vincent has been resting at home since then, working towards a full recovery.

Vincent’s wife Sabayath (47) takes care of him and their home together, while his two sons Vinod (24) and Vijith (21) dropped out of college and began to work as carpenters and minor construction workers in order to help the family financially.

During the floods of August 2018 in Kerala, their village of Kurumbathuruth, an island in Chendamangalam Panchayath, Paravoor was one of the worst hit areas. Their house was immersed in upto 6 feet of flood water which stayed at this height for over a week.

The family shifted to a shelter camp in Kottapuram for 11 days until they finally returned, one of the last families to do so.

Their house was completely filled with slush and mud when they returned. For days they worked with shovels to clear and clean the space that was once their home.

The Tools Bank set up by Habitat India, in partnership with Shapoorji Pallonji & Company Limited (SPCL) helped to alleviate their problems and speed up the cleaning process.

They were able to clean the house and its walls using the pressure jet, with Vijith taking personal care of the walls and ensuring that they returned to their previous spotless state.

The submersible pump also helped them clean the well in their home.

When Habitat India staff along with SPCL Team personally met them, Vincent and his family expressed their gratitudefor all the materials gifted to them, and how thankful they were for this help in a time of need!