Ludington church bringing safe water to Haiti

April 26, 2013

dan hamman haitiBy Rob Alway, Editor-in-Chief.

LUDINGTON – We pretty much take clean, safe drinking water for granted here in the United States. But, for the people of Third World, water is often a scarcity. For those who do have water, open wells and dirty water can often the source of diseases such as cholera. Such is the case for many Haitians.

For the past several years, Dave Hamman has been traveling to Haiti as part of the missions team of United Methodist Church of Ludington. Since the 2010 earthquake, he has traveled there 10 times. UMC of Ludington helps support a school in northern Haiti near the town of Cap Haitien.

The latest project of the Ludington church is to provide clean drinking water to the community and surrounding areas. It is currently in the process of raising funds to install a well and pump for the school. Hamman said the estimated 100-foot well will cost about $3,000. The Ludington Rotary Club has committed $1,000 of the cost and Hamman spoke to the club Thursday afternoon.

The well will mean clean and safe drinking water for the elementary school’s 350 children. The well will also serve 25 students who attend an adjacent agricultural school, a Methodist church congregation along with nearby villagers. The school is operated by the Methodist Church of Haiti, which owns the largest school system in the country, with 120,000 students.

“These schools provide hot meals and education to children who otherwise would not get those services,” Hamman said.

A group of area residents are about to go on another trip to Haiti. Hamman said he and Pastor Norm Letsinger will also be helping the students of the agricultural school. Letsinger, who is an avid wood turner, will be shipping two lathes to the country and will instruct people on how to use them as a vocation.

The missions group will be helping at the school and will also be assisting with building a new church in a nearby town. The well itself is being installed by Lifewater of Canada (

Hamman also demonstrated to the Rotarians how people in Haiti are being provided with safe drinking water thanks to the generosity of a local manufacturer and the donations of area people.

House of Flavors ice cream has donated, to date, 220 5-gallon buckets that are used for water filtration. The buckets are used with Sawyer water filters ( ), which cost around $43 each. Dirty water is run through the buckets and filter. After about 45 minutes, the water is safe to drink. Hamman said the filters will typically last for over 1 million gallons of filtration.

“These buckets have saved a lot of lives,” he said.


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