Orange County Branch Newsletter

August 2011

Engineers Without Borders

A Call to Engineers in Orange County and Abroad


By Bobby Fouladi, PE

This past June, members of the Orange County Professional Chapter of Engineers Without Borders (EWB) made a trip to Honduras where they spent 10 days on an assessment of the region for a proposed water project. Their goal was to establish contacts and accomplish tasks that will be beneficial to the planning, design, and construction of a new water system for the current and future demands of an emerging village of approximately 300 people.

The trip was funded through membership dues, private donations, local engineering businesses, and rotary clubs in Southern California. When the EWB-OC volunteers arrived in Honduras, they were met by a church group from Juticulpa who graciously provided them with transportation from the airport as well as much-appreciated company and food at several meals.

During the trip, a Peace Corps representative, who is familiar with the region and fluent in Spanish, helped the volunteers gain an audience with many different local and regional leaders. These community leaders will be key partners for the successful execution of the water project. Through meetings with the city of Juticalpa’s mayor, two federal water agencies, the community presidents, and a rotary club in Honduras, the EWB members achieved continuity and an understanding of the project goals among all the different parties involved which included:

  • Transporting and delivering an 85-pound drill bit to a federal water agency,
  • Identifying a property owner to donate land for the future water tank,
  • Performing a geotechnical investigation at the proposed water tank site,
  • Determining the existing well capacity from the local water engineer, and
  • Performing a preliminary survey of the communities.
Your Help is Needed

To successfully design and construct the project, EWB-OC is requesting the support of designers and engineering professionals in Orange County and abroad who can offer their advice and support in the following areas:

  • Water Design and Distribution Network Engineering
  • Structural Design and Tank Engineering
  • Grant Applications and Leads on new Grants
  • Fundraising and Donations

You can be a part of improving the standard of living for a developing community in Honduras. To become involved please visit our website where you can participate and/or donate.

Engineers Without Borders-USA was founded in 2002 at the University of Boulder, Colorado, to address some of the most prevalent engineering challenges facing the developing world today. The organization partners with developing communities to address issues such as clean water, sewer, transportation, infrastructure, and renewable energy. EWB-USA operates to focus small groups of engineers seeking to improve the lives of others, who are less fortunate, through the creation of simple and sustainable designs. By collaborating with developing communities that have demonstrated their willingness to become involved in their own future, EWB-USA, has sparked an engineering movement that has helped to improve the lives of more than a million people, worldwide.

Comprised of an expansive network of more than 12,000 members including approximately 250 student and professional chapters; the Engineers Without Borders –USA organization is engaged in more than 350 active programs, in 45 countries around the world. Membership consists of professionals and students from a variety of backgrounds, diverse in culture, with a common goal and the desire to improve the lives of others.

Please visit the following websites for more information:

Engineers Without Borders, Orange County Chapter, Homepage

A Blog about our recent assessment trip to Honduras

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