TEAM WORK: Sponsored by Aqua Rural manager Remo Raccanello, St Joseph's media and industrial design students are helping Vietnamese communities implement new water technology. Photo Ella Archibald-Binge / Stanthorpe Border Post
TEAM WORK: Sponsored by Aqua Rural manager Remo Raccanello, St Joseph's media and industrial design students are helping Vietnamese communities implement new water technology. Photo Ella Archibald-Binge / Stanthorpe Border Post Ella Archibald-Binge

Water woes washed away

IT IS said that many hands make light work, but it's a case of many hands making water work, as St Joseph's students pool their skills to share Australia's plumbing expertise with disadvantaged Vietnamese communities.

Year 10 industrial design students have been busy learning how to assemble a hydraulic ram pump - a simple and cost-effective device that moves water uphill without an external power source, using only two moving parts.

Media studies students will film their classmates demonstrating how the pump works for a video that will be distributed around the Vietnamese province of Bac Kan. Project researcher Shane Gregg said the device would make a huge difference to poorer communities. "They have plenty of water over there, but moving it around is difficult," Mr Gregg said.

"When they see something that works and is not expensive, they'll say 'Okay, now we can do our own'."

Mr Gregg will be one of 11 parents travelling to Vietnam, accompanied by local agronomist Alan Robinson, to install some of the pumps in Bac Kan.

Eleven students will also embark on the trip, which St Joseph's principal Michael McCarthy hopes will be an eye-opening experience.

"We can sometimes get complacent with the things we have access to," Mr McCarthy said.

"The motivating factor for this trip was to broaden the minds of students."

The Stanthorpe group leaves on September 21 for the seven-day trip.

Stanthorpe Border Post

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