Making Rivers Come Alive...My Struggle To Live

As Waste Goes Out, a Dying River Returns to Life



I had to post this because it is so inspirational. A river deemed dead brought back to life by the people who saw its sacredness and its ability to bring life back to them.

"Kerala’s Kuttamperoor is once again ready to defend communities against floods, aid fishermen

It’s a rebirth for the Kuttamperoor river, a tributary of Pampa and Achencoil rivers. The river, a natural inter-connecting reverine system, is getting a new lease of life thanks to a drive for removing the accumulated waste.

A stretch of about 5 km of the river, flowing along the Budhanoor panchayat in Alappuzha district, has been cleaned up. Thick layers of water weeds and waste dumped into the river for more than a decade were removed. A scheme for cleaning up of the river, about 12-km long, had been drawn up several years ago, but could not be taken up due to lack of proper funding.

The project was implemented under the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme. About 200 workers were engaged for the work during a two-month period, generating 30,000 man days. An amount of Rs.72 lakh was spent on the project,” P. Viswambhara Panicker, Budhanoor panchayat president, told The Hind.

Waste materials such as plastic bottles and containers and food refuse dumped by unscrupulous catering units had turned the river into a watery grave for flora and fauna. Once the natural flow was obstructed, the polluted water infiltrated into drinking water resources, including wells along the river, rendering the water non-potable. Wells had dried up in many adjoining areas,” Mr. Panicker said."




In Kerala 700 People Worked 70 Days To Revive a River Considered Dead For Over a Decade

"Kuttemperoor river, after being subjected to years of severe pollution and illegal sand mining, had almost vanished into obscurity until last year, when an initiative vehemently led by the Budhanoor gram panchayat in Alappuzha district did the unimaginable!

The river, which is a tributary for both Pamba and Achankovil rivers, was once known to be close to 12km in length and almost 100m in width, and had been the source of drinking water for the residents of Budhanoor. Apart from providing irrigation for acres of paddy fields, the river had also been a route that was used by local traders for transporting their goods.

Interestingly, the river has donned the savior role many times during the monsoons when Pamba and Achankovil rivers overflowed, by taking in the excess water and thus thwarting floods at different places.

The extent of joy we felt when a boat took people for tour after the revival of the river is something we can’t explain. A river that didn’t even have enough water to be called by the name, it was an impossible dream transformed into reality,” Reshmi says."


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The extent of joy they felt in seeing this river alive again is the joy we should all feel in seeing all our waterways revived. These people proved it can be done and I am joyful for them. I hope you will pass this story on to others to share the hope and joy we can all feel in working and fighting to save our water, land and ourselves in the process.

This story also gives me hope as I now fight Stage IV ovarian cancer. I was diagnosed almost two months ago and have been in chemo treatments since. The prognosis was once a death sentence. However, there are now ways to fight where I can prolong my life for five to ten years.

It is why I have not been here for a while, but I still try on good days to keep up with what is going on in the world where positive stories are rare. However, just as the people of Kerala decided they would not allow their life to die, I too feel the same about beating this cancer.

It is not easy and I still have a long way to go. We don't know what the future holds, but I do believe we can have a hand in crafting it by seeing through obstacles and persevering through love.

I don't know when I will be able to post here again, but wanted readers to know I appreciate your support and will always care about this Earth and those who need this life blood- water to sustain their lives just as I now fight for mine.

The story of this river and the people determined to save it is one of hope for that which was once dead to live again. As we all can. As our Earth can.

Comments

J Moore said…
Seems there was a glich here previously that rejected comment I approved. Sorry about that. Please post again if you wish to. Should be ok now. Just also want to say thank you to those who sent me well wishes. I am taking it one day at a time and even though some days are not as good as others, I remain positive.