30 years ago, things were flourishing for the farmers in the Bodhamalai region. Groundwater, which is the major source of water for agriculture and other purposes here, was abundant. Groundwater was well accessible from within a depth of 50 feet. The major source of groundwater recharge in this area is the stream/runoff from the Mallur Reserve Forest. These forests exists over hilly regions and water from here flows down to the foothills where these villagers reside. There is a small lake, which gets its water from the hills too. More than 5 check dams existed in the area around the lake with the purpose of storing water and allowing it to recharge ground water.
Current Situation: However, in the recent years, erosion and flashfloods have taken their toll on these check dams. A lot of silt and sand deposits from the hills is also impeding their capabilities of holding water. Adding to the woes, the sidewalls of some of the check dams are broken or eroded. A lot of the water from the hills now cannot be retained at the foothills and flows away without being able to percolate into groundwater levels. Groundwater level has now dropped from 50ft (30 years ago) to more than 1000 feet below surface! This is a huge concern for the farmers, who without proper water supply will not be able to cultivate their lands. There are more than 1000 such farmers from around the 20 small villages around the foothills. Uncertainty looms over their livelihood and their only hope now is proper rebuilding and repair of the check dams.
Plan: Plan is to rebuild these check dams and to also construct side bunds around them for better retention of runoff water. The project plan involves reconstructing broken dam walls, raising their height, de-siltation of the region inside these dams, creating side bunds around various strategic locations around the dam as well as digging up recharge pits at specific points so as to enable better percolation of water. This is a solution that will enable more runoff water to be retained and for the water to have more time to penetrate into groundwater levels. The recharge pits would also serve to enable faster absorption of water into the earth. This would be a long run, tactical solution to the issue of falling ground water levels here. As a result, the water supply for farming will be abundant and hence, 20 villages as well as the neighboring town of Rasipuram (famous for its silk sarees) would benefit from this project.
Location of site : Maps
|Manpower Expenses:-||Quantitative Description||Hours per day||Per hour cost||Number of days||Cost|
|Manpower to be deployed:||20+ skilled workforce||8||-||60||50,000|
|Machineries rental expense:-||Quantitative Description|
|Two tipper lorry||2||8||625||20||200000|
|Check dam reconstruction||-||-||-||-||500000|
|Other cost (food,miscellaneous,etc)||-||-||-||-||100000|
Brief about the NGO Partner Saytrees:
Saytrees is a group of extremely passionate people brought together by their common goal of saving the environment. They have planted around 27000 saplings around cities and towns in 2019 alone and are continuously maintaining them.
Saytrees is also striving to rejuvenate lakes so as to help alleviate the degrading ground water conditions. This in turn helps in increasing the water supply for regions around the lake. Saving the lakes also serves to improve the biodiversity of the entire region. Saytrees has rejuvenated 3 such lakes until now. The combined capacity of the rejuvenated lakes is 207,342,000 litres of water (That's approximately the same volume as what 41,468 standard-sized water tanker trucks can carry!) Here’s a link describing an earlier, successful lake rejuvenation project (similar to the one here) that was conducted by SayTrees recently: Water_conservation_project
Details of Bhushan Walzade:
Bhushan is currently working as a General Manager in a private company. He is also an endurance athlete and has completed 2 half Iron Triathlons (1.9km swim + 90km cycle + 21km of run) & 1 Olympic Category Triathlon. He has also completed multiple endurance cycling and running events. He is concerned about the water crisis issue and climate change problems, which the world is facing. He intends to do his bit in bringing about a change.
Bhushan is attempting to complete the Ironman (140.6) Triathlon (Self Funded) on the 1st of December 2019 in Busselton Western Australia (near Perth). In this event he will have to swim for 3.8 km, followed by cycling for 180 km & finally he has to complete a 42.2 km full marathon, all within 17 hours. He will be doing this event to create awareness about water conservation and tree plantation in order to save our environment. He will be raising funds for this project, which will help resolve water problems for 20 villages and 1000+ farmers. He has been following a rigorous training program of 6 months for this event, which started, from June 2019.
Details of his training program till now: