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Upper Kalskag Elder Water Project

April 19, 2013 - Breaking News:

The Upper Kalskag Elder Water Project is well on its way to its goal of $50,000! With support from area Rotary's and the Kuskokwim Corporation this worthy and much needed project has raised over $34,000 of its goal of $50,000. for more information or to support this great state of Alaska project please contact Maver Carey at 952-3826 or email at mec@kuskokwim.com . Thank you.

 Background: 

 Upper Kalskag is a village of approximately 219 people (DCCED certified estimate) located on the north bank of the Kuskokwim River approximately 348 miles west of Anchorage and 99 miles northeast of Bethel. 

Drinking water in Upper Kalskag is obtained from individual wells that serve the homes, school, store, government offices, and the clinic.  Nearly all homes have indoor plumbing.  Most of the wells in the community were drilled at the same time and tap into the same relatively shallow aquifer.  The water from these wells is safe but varies in quality.  The majority are highly mineralized, containing lots of iron, and are not palatable.  The City building and Clinic drinking well has reportedly been drilled significantly deeper and tap into another aquifer which is much more pleasant to drink. 

In a meeting with Upper Kalskag community leaders on 11/29/12, it was determined that most of the elders in the community live in the same general area, in a subdivision located adjacent to the Kuskokwim River.  Nine elders in that subdivision were identified whose well water is not drinkable due to mineral taste.  Many of these elders are unable to haul water from other homes or locations in the community with good quality water.  As a result, these elders often tend to go without adequate water to drink.  The community leaders also confirmed the water at the City building and Clinic is much better quality and taste.

We have researched and considered several options for assisting these elders with daily access to clean, palatable drinking water.  What we believe to be the most viable and cost-effective option makes use of the best quality water sources already available in town and uses time-tested, low-technology techniques which are also low-cost and low-maintenance, hence easily sustainable.  We recommend this approach be tested on a small-scale trial basis with this core group of nine elders.  We expect there will be valuable lessons-learned by taking this step-wise approach.

To support this project with a contribution please contact Maver Carey at 952-3826 or email at mec@kuskokwim.com . Thank you.