Engineers Without Borders to host 'Make an Eco Impact' event

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Help Engineers Without Borders build eco-latrines in Bolivia

The University of Tulsa and Oklahoma East chapters of Engineers Without Borders (EWB) are hosting “Make an Eco Impact”, a wine tasting and silent auction fundraiser at 7 p.m. Thursday, August 27 at the Tulsa Garden Center. The student organization's goal is $35,000 in order to send 18-20 people to Cotani, Bolivia, to build four eco-latrines (self-composting toilets).

Engineers Without Borders was created to develop and implement simple engineering infrastructure projects in poor indigenous villages in the Third World.

"Thousands of people in the developing world suffer or die every day because of their lack of access to basic infrastructure such as potable water, sanitation, irrigation and transportation," said Laura Ford, TU-EWB sponsor and chemical engineering associate professor. "Even a small infrastructure project can have a huge impact on the quality of life of hundreds of people."

TU-EWB will be working with Oklahoma East EWB, a professional chapter in Tulsa. They will construct the latrines in Cotani, Bolivia, a small village of 50 families located high in the Andes. OK-East and TU visited Cotani this May and the villagers have asked us to help them build eco-latrines (self-composting toilets). Cotani has no sanitation system of any kind and this project will have a huge impact on the health of the community. TU will send 18-20 students and volunteers to Bolivia over a three week period in November to construct the eco-latrines and teach the community maintenance techniques.

Ti Amos restaurant will sponsor the event and provide all the food and wine. All funds raised will directly lead to the construction of eco-latrines that will improve the health of the Cotani people as well as the many other villages downstream from Cotani.

Engineers Without Borders is a 501(c)(3) organization and donations are tax-deductible. The cost to attend the wine tasting is $50. Please contact Rebecca Ward by phone at (918) 520-7256 or by email at if you have questions or are interested in supporting the project.

Amethyst Cavallaro