After we returned home, we, with the help of the SHCJ Sisters, were able to get enough of the pipes laid to get the water turned on. The cost was around $850, not the projected $3000. The Sisters fronted the funds with our promise to reimburse them. We're working on raising the money now. If you would like to help, contact Cindy or me.
This now means that when the neighboring towns get water (2x or 3x per week), Lechería does also. It's not drinking water, but at least it is available to most houses in the batey. Some of the folks are able to connect to the main pipe and bring the water up to their houses (Some may have been more successful at this than others, from what I hear).
A small section near the front of the batey still needs to be added. Hopefully, we can help get this completed soon.
The well at the front of the batey still supplies water, but it is pumped to an old contaminated storage tank. The manual pump no longer works, so the water from there is pumped only when electricity is available.
Another group called Water is Life (www.waterislife.com) is planning to visit in October. Perhaps they will be able to add another piece of the puzzle of sustainable water to the picture. For now, the people of Lechería continue to live life the only way that they know how - day to day.