Save the Lake, Water Resources Inventory and Development to improve potable water and sanitation: Lake Atitlan Guatemala Watershed


Save the Lake, Water Resources Inventory and Development to improve potable water and sanitation: Lake Atitlan Guatemala Watershed




In a few short sentences, tell us your objectives for this global grant.

The Global Grant will build on the excellent study by ( insert Spanish group name ,year) This will add greatly to the existing body of knowledge of potable water resources available in the Lake Atitlan Basin.The grant will impact the more than 430,000 (Wikipedia) who live in the area.  According to the data and reliable studies (citation) Lake Atitlan is one of the most beautiful and endangered lakes in the world. The lake is eutrophying quickly and is no longer suitable as a source of potable water.

We will also work with the local communities to encourage spring reinforcement and improvement including reforestation.  Finally, the project will build a number of spring catchment facilities to protect certain springs.  


Which of the following activities will this global grant fund?

Humanitarian project


Where will your project take place?

The project will take place throughout the Department of Solola, especially the municipalities of Concepción, Nahualá, Nueva Santa Catarina Ixtahuacan, Panajachel, San Andrés Semetabaj, San Antonio Palopó,  San José Chacayá, San Juan La Laguna, San Lucas Tolimán, San Marcos La Laguna, San Pablo La Laguna, San Pedro La Laguna, Santa Catarina Ixtahuacan, Santa Catarina Palopó, Santa Clara La Laguna, Santa Cruz La Laguna, Santa Lucía Utatlán, Santa María Visitació and Santiago Atitlán

Country: Guatemala


When do you anticipate your project will take place?

From: We can begin as early as January, 2017.

Until: If fully funded, we will finish at the culmination of the dry season in August, 2018


Outline your project implementation schedule.


Phase one



Review existing studies

Two weeks


Draft and sign the MOUs by all required parties

One week.



Mayra is very much up to speed on that.

One week.


Field visits to at least half of the municipalities and Identify of specific springs

One month


Measurement of the springs at the end of the dry season (Bruce we need to get the time line shorter or we will not get any money until 7. I think we can find enough high flow rate springs to start with, 8-10 at least.

One month


Water quality testing and analysis

One month


Write up of interim report final report including cost estimates for spring ownership and use.

Two weeks.

Phase two


Negotiation with owners ? Perhaps on easement Rights but I don't suspect Rotary wants to be in the real estate business.

One month


Writing and letting of subcontracts

Two weeks.


Hopefully we can find enough community owned springs.






Field visits of remaining springs



Negotiation with owners

One month





Construction of Spring Catchments

One month for each spring



One year




What community needs will your project address and how were these needs identified? Provide any relevant data or survey results

The community identified its need.  The basic goal will be the identification of springs and the building of spring catchments.  However, the overall goal of the project is to use this effort as a step to address poverty and the poor distribution in wealth in rural Guatemala.  We will attach two studies performed by Agua del Pueblo, James Madison and Furman University in a sister community (Chipman, Strait and Clemens, 2014; Clemens & Douglas, 2012; Sauer, M. S Smith and B Clemens 2012).  The studies demonstrate how AdP potable water projects lead to reductions in rural poverty and the poor distribution of wealth.

 ____Bruce can we include a citation from Andy on the health benefits of lots of decent water over small amounts of perfect water.

Detail how your project will address these community needs.

The benefits of clean drinking water are already well known and described earlier.  More importantly, the project will eventually slow the eutrophication of the Lake.


How were members of the local community involved in planning the project? Does your project align with any current or ongoing local initiatives?

The core of Agua del Pueblo’s methodology lies in the leadership of the beneficiary community.  The department, municipalities and communities took the lead in identifying the problem.  Most importantly, the community will be responsible for the operation and maintenance of the catchment systems, ensuring sustainability.  Mr. Joseph Wakely has lived in Guatemala for a number of years.  Joe led the successful repair of the SunSpring System and is taking the lead in the implementation of Global Grant GG1529575.  Dr. Bruce Clemens has been 'boots on the ground' in Guatemala since 1972. He is also a member of the host club.


Describe any training, community outreach, or educational programs, if applicable, and who will conduct them.

Agua del Pueblo will lead the field training.  The community will choose leaders to help with the training in technical and financial sustainability.


Areas of Focus

Water, sanitation and the pollution of Lake Atitlan.


Which goals will your activity focus on.

  1. Identify those productive springs that are community owned but unexploited because of lack of capital or disrepair. Repair and or construct spring catchments to prevent contamination of the springs at the source and pipe water to a more suitable point of use if required.
  2. Provide equitable community access to safe water, improved sanitation and hygiene.
  3. With the input of the community seek out new opportunities for low technology improved sanitation methodologies.
  4. Through training programs in sanitation, hygiene and environmental stewardship reduce the amount of polluted water discharged  into the Lake Atitlan watershed.  
  5. Strengthen the ability of communities to develop, fund and maintain sustainable water and sanitation systems.


How will you meet these goals?

Joe Wakely led the refurbishment of District 5170 District Grant.  He was also the lead of the Global Grant GG1529575.  He lives half time in Panajachel Guatemala.  Panajachel is centrally located in the Department. Dr. Bruce Clemens, a member of the Host Rotary, has been working with the local Mayan communities on health awareness and economic improvement for over 40 years. Dr. William Boegel is the President of the Host Rotary. The Host Rotary has long been involved with community outreach and will continue to do so on this Global Grant Project.

Due to their regular and ongoing contact with the Lake Atitlan communities, there is always someone such as Joe Wakely or Dr. Bruce Clemens to contact with questions or problems. Given that, and the initial training of local engineers, coupled with the simplicity of the project, will help ensure the success of the project.


How will you measure your impact?




Method Measurement

Measurement Schedule



Number of spring identified and tested

Direct observation

Every two months

The most important of the ____ springs referenced in the ____ report.


Purchase and construction of catchment facilities

Direct observation


Eight springs



Who will be responsible for collecting information for monitoring and evaluation?

Mr. Joe Wakely (Local Host Rotary)

Dr. Bruce Clemens (Agua del Pueblo & Member of Host Rotary)


Primary Contacts





Sponsored by

Serving as

Joe Wakely

e-Club Panajachel

Primary contact





Primary contact





Secondary contact





Secondary contact





No Rotarian who has a vested interest in the activity (e.g., an employee or board member of a cooperating organization, owner of a store where project goods will be purchased, trustee of a university that a scholar plans to attend) may serve on the grant committee. If any potential conflict of interest exists, disclose it here.

We do not foresee any conflicts of interest.  Dr. Bruce Clemens will be a Host Rotary Committee member as well as a member of Agua del Pueblo.  Dr. Clemens receives no remuneration from AdP, and sits on AdP’s Technical Advisory Board. 




Identify the responsibilities of the volunteer traveler(s) and the specific tasks that each individual will complete.




 List any additional partners who will participate and identify their responsibilities. This may include Rotary clubs,

  • Lic Eric Toc, Director; Ing. Mateo Racancój, Lead Engineer: Ing. Carlos Simon, Lead Engineer y TSR Diego Campala, Agua del Pueblo
  • Mr. Andy Karp, The People’s Consultants, Co-founder of AdP



Describe the role of the host Rotarians in this activity and list their specific responsibilities.

The host Rotarians, notably Mr. Joe Wakely and Dr. Bruce Clemens will oversee every aspect of the project.  They will do the outreach to the Mayans, particularly the local officials and recipient families


Describe the role of the international Rotarians in this activity and list their specific responsibilities.

We hope that our international partners will visit the work twice.  They will travel to the village to meet with the villages and oversee the entire process from preliminary design to inauguration of the catchment boxes..  Rotarians will then make the required follow-up reports.



Describe the role that members of the local community will play in implementing your project. What incentives (e.g., compensation, awards, certification, promotion) will you provide to encourage local participation?

The communities will provide ALL of the non-skilled labor.  The Department and local municipalities will provide a portion of the skilled labor.


Identify any individuals in the local community who will be responsible for monitoring outcomes and ensuring continuity of services. How will you support these individuals to help them take on this leadership role?

Erick Toc is the director of Agua del Pueblo.  AdP will choose two members of each community to train and support.



Select the local currency for your budget and enter the current rate of exchange to 1 U.S. dollar. Obtain the current RI exchange rate from Rotary's website. If your country is not on the official RI exchange rates list, visit the Oanda or Bloomberg website to obtain the current rate. Detail your proposed expenses by adding items to the budget. Note that the total budget must be equal to the total financing of your activity.



Joe, cuz I’m such a lazy bum, I will let this MOST important section for you.  Let me emphasize Andy’s recommendations and add a few:

  1. Include as few “line items” that you are able.  The Sanik-Ya budget had six.  I argued that we should try to combine those into fewer.  The more line items, the more nit picking.  You’ll have to work with Erick on this one.  He may have to re-massage the numbers.
  2. Include a line item for AdP’s management including engineering, construction management, training, community organization, etc.  I’d recommend 10% of the TOTAL budget.  Ask Erick about this.
  3. Over and above everything include 5-10% in contingencies.
  4. You want it easy to know the money to request and easy to monitor.

I’ll be happy to help, Joe, but you are the man on the ground who will have to shuffle all those facturas…







Local Cost (GTQ)

Cost in US Dollars


Local transportation







Field Office







Spring preservation (purchase and construction materials for spring catchments and reforestation

$20,000 * 6 springs






Skilled and Unskilled labor







Skilled Labor







Analyses – both physical chemical and bacteriological

12 samples @ $100













10% of Subtotal for AdP management














Contingencies 5-10%






Grand Total










Describe the process for selecting these budget items. Do you plan to purchase any items from local vendors? Have you performed a competitive bidding process to select vendors? Do these budget items align with the local culture and technology standards?

All items will be produced in country.  Agua del Pueblo follows a multiple bidding procedure.  The Board becomes involved with bids of over $2,000.  AdP has successfully completed over 800 similar water projects.


How will the beneficiaries maintain these items? If applicable, confirm that spare or replacement parts are readily available and that the beneficiaries possess the skills to operate equipment.

The system is designed with air and cleaning valves.  On a periodic basis a representative of the village leadership (Consejo de la Comunidad de Desarrollo –COCODE) will purge the air and open the cleaning valves. 


Who will own the items purchased with grant funds at the end of the project, including equipment, assets, and materials? Note that a Rotary club or Rotarian cannot own items.

The Village Water Committee of the COCODEs of the recipient communities will own all of the equipment.



The Rotary Foundation funds global grants from the World Fund, and awards range from US$15,000 to US$200,000. The Foundation matches cash contributions at 50 percent and District Designated Fund (DDF) contributions at 100 percent. The Foundation will also match non-Rotarian contributions toward a grant, provided they do not come from a cooperating organization or a beneficiary.

To determine the World Fund match for your global grant, list all sources of funding, specifying contributions from cash, DDF, and other sources. Non-Rotarian contributions with no match from TRF can be included in the grant financing if they are being used to purchase grant budget items. These contributions should not be sent to TRF. Note that the total financing must be equal to the total budget of your activity.

  • NOTE: Any grant cash contributions sent to TRF must include an additional to support processing expenses. After you have added all funding sources and the requested World Fund match, click "Save" to save your grant financing.



Funding Method


Amount (US Dollars)











DDF contributions:


Cash contributions:


Other contributions:


Endowed/Term gift contributions:


World Fund match maximum:


World Fund match (requested):


Total financing:


Total budget:





Have you identified a local funding source to ensure long-term project outcomes? Will you introduce practices to help generate income for ongoing project funding?

The community will collect a monthly fee for ongoing maintenance.  There shouldn't be capital funds required for the next 20 plus years.


Application Authorization

By submitting this global grant application, we agree to the following:

1. All information contained in this application is, to the best of our knowledge, true and accurate, and we intend to implement the activities as presented in this application.

2. The club/district agrees to undertake these activities as a club/district.

3. We will ensure all cash contributions (as detailed in the grant financing) will be forwarded to The Rotary Foundation (TRF) or sent directly to the global grant bank account after Trustee approval of the grant.

4. Rotary International (RI) and TRF may use information contained in this application to promote the activities by various means such as The Rotarian, the RI international convention, RVM: The Rotarian Video Magazine, etc.

5. We agree to share information on best practices when asked, and TRF may provide our contact information to other Rotarians who may wish advice on implementing similar activities.

6. To the best of our knowledge and belief, except as disclosed herewith, neither we nor any person with whom we have or had a personal or business relationship are engaged, or intend to engage, in benefiting from TRF grant funds or have any interest that may represent a potential competing or conflicting interest. A conflict of interest is defined as a situation in which a Rotarian, in relationship to an outside organization, is in a position to influence the spending of TRF grant funds, or influence decisions in ways that could lead directly or indirectly to financial gain for the Rotarian, a business colleague, or his or her family, or give improper advantage to others to the detriment of TRF.


Primary Contact Authorizations




Authorization Status

Authorization Date

Primary Contact

Joe Wakely



Primary Contact






















DRFC Authorizations




Authorization Status

Authorization Date






























Geologos del Mundo, 2012, ‘Estudio Hidrogeologico y de Recarga en el Cuenca del lago de Atitlan, Guatemala’ 




Almost all residents of Sololá are Kaqchikel Maya, except in Argueta, where most are K'iche' Maya.[2] A large percentage of both men and women continue to wear traditional Mayan clothing (Wikipedia)


Communities first approached Agua del Pueblo (AdP) in 1972.  AdP is the Guatemalan non-profit organization that has overseen the construction of over 700 water projects in highland Guatemala, benefiting more than 500,000.  Communities asked AdP to identify the most appropriate sources of water.  In most cases, gravity fed springs provide the most cost effective approach.  Typically, if properly protected, spring water needs minimal treatment. 


Over the past 40 years, Rotary, AdP, the parish of San Lucas Toliman, NGOs and the Guatemalan government have helped communities in the municipality of San Lucas TOliman.  on the south shores of the lake identify and develop spring resources.  AdP, other NGOs and the Guatemalan government also worked on the northern watershed.  


In _____, Geologos de Mundo (Worldwide Geologists and ______) began work on the first comprehensive hydrogeological study of springs and other water resources in the Atitlan watershed.  The work, entitled ‘Estudio Hidrogeologico y de Recarga en ll Cuenca del lago de Atitlan, Guatemala’ (Hydrogeological and Recharge Study of the Atital Basin).  This grant will build on this study and identify and characterize all of the springs.  The study took place in the rainy season and was not able tyo _______________________  .                 The report states (ADD CITATION and translate) :


“Durante el presente estudio se inventariaron un total de 872 puntos de agua, de los cuales 804 se encuentran dentro de la cuenca del lago de Atitlán y 68 se encuentran en las inmediaciones de ésta


Se aforaron un total de 510 nacimientos. Los caudales medidos fueron, en general, bajos. Más de un 20% caudales menores a 0.05 l/s, casi un 15% poseen caudales entre 0.05 y 0.1 l/s, más de un 38% posee caudales entre 0.1 y 0.5 l/s, menos de un 10% posee caudales entre 0.5 y 1 l/s, cerca de un 14% posee valores entre 1 y 5 l/s y únicamente un 2% posee valores entre 5 y 12 l/s.

El caudal medio es de 0.6 l/s y el caudal máximo medido dentro de la cuenca es de 11,61 l/s.

El bajo caudal en los nacimientos de la cuenca y su variabilidad estacional puede indicar que son de carácter superficial. Por tanto, la mayoría de los nacimientos de la cuenca proceden de acuíferos superficiales.



  La distribución de los diferentes elementos químicos en la cuenca del lago de Atitlán es muy variable espacialmente. Las diferentes unidades hidrogeológicas, su estructura, distribución y textura, condicionan la existencia y liberación de determinados elementos en las aguas subterráneas.

En la siguiente tabla y gráficas se representan los valores medios de concentraciones para cada elemento analizado en las aguas subterráneas, en las aguas del lago y la suma de ambas. En ellas se observa que los valores medios de las aguas del lago son los más altos en flúor, cloro, calcio, magnesio, potasio, pH, conductividad eléctrica, temperatura, total de sólidos disueltos, bicarbonatos y sulfatos, en comparación con las aguas de los pozos y nacimientos. Este comportamiento no se refleja en el caso del hierro, nitratos y sílice, que tienen concentraciones menores en las aguas del lago.


Tabla 1. Valores medios de concentraciones en los elementos analizados, en las muestras de aguas subterráneas, del lago de Atitlán y ambas sumadas.





The situation has detiorated significantly since 1972.  Lake Atitlan is eutrophying.  It was named ____________________, 




Rotary International Director Brad Howard has discussed how Water Projects are one of the Six Areas of Focus.  Director Howard commented that 'one out of six people in the world do not have dependable safe drinking water (Brad Howard citing The Big Thirst, p136, Charles Fishman). The Santa Cruz Rotary (California) District Grant (2015) and Global Grant (GG1529575 - ongoing) provide the foundation for this effort.



We will also reach out to other districts to increase camaraderie and collaboration among Clubs.


Training Matrix

Name of Global Grant: Sanik-Ya and Chitulul ……

Grant Number:  Application GG___________



Title of Training


Activities/ Topics

Length of Training/ Topic

Frequency of Training

Who is doing and receiving the training?

Expected Outcomes

How will participants demonstrate gained skills & knowledge?

Is this a new or existing training?

Community Organization and fiscal maintenance

To ensure the financial sustainability of the project

Activity 1:

1. Piped water is not free.

2.  Any water system has costs for repair and replacement.

1-2 years


Agua del Pueblo barefoot engineers and accountants

Eventually, the local community will be able to conduct the collection and banking without outside help.

Direct observation and discussion

Agua del Pueblo has trained more than 700 village leaders over the past 40 years in this field




  1. Chipman, C., V. Strait and B Clemens, 2014 “Who Cares About the Community? Agua del Pueblo as a case study for water-related non-profit work”: American Journal of Social Issues and Humanities 4(6): 319-334.
  2. Clemens, B. and Tom Douglas 2012. “To what degree can potable water foster international economic development?  What role does health play? Organization Management Journal. 9(2): 83-89. DOI:10.1080/15416518.2012.687988
  3. Sauer, M. S Smith and B Clemens 2012 “Does it pay to invest in potable water in the developing world: Relationships between external financing and economic development in sustainable community-run integrated projects” Journal of International Development Article: first published online: 27 SEP: DOI: 10.1002/jid.2880
  4. Proyecto: Introducción de agua potable Quixaya (<________________>.xlsx) 



Project Type: 

  • Hygiene
  • Sanitation
  • Water



# of people benefited indirectly: 


Total Budget Needed: 

$100 000.00

Amount Raised so Far: 

$3 000.00

Local Language(s) Spoken: 

Katchikel, Quiche, Tzutujil and Spanish
This Project was last updated on: Sunday Nov 27th, 2016