Monday, February 10, 2014

10/2/14 - New and Improved Cap T Laundry Facilities

Heather explaining the new laundry facilities

This blog, I’m afraid, must begin with an apology. I prefer to think of it less as late and more in line with island time. I’m a GVI Divemaster Intern volunteer now based at Blue Sea Divers on Mahe completing my divemaster internship. 

While on base from September to December, our Team Leadership and Biological Survey courses began our preparations for the divemaster internship. We were asked to think of a project to benefit everyone which would last the duration of our stay at Cap Ternay. After much deliberation and discussion with my fellow volunteers a renovation of the laundry area was decided and “Operation Touching Cloth” was born, or OTC for short. Through the heat and insect bites the OTC volunteers and I created a semi civilised washing facility complete with hand crank washing machine. 

I must explain....the previous facility consisted of a couple of bowls which sat beneath the pillar which supports the kitchen, the general hope from washing your clothes was more to evenly distribute the dirt or remove sand than to actually clean them. I’m not complaining, there was something quite bonding about a general consensus to smell, an acceptance of being human that isn’t often found in general society. Still, we all yearned to feel the comforts of smelling like modern man. 

We set to work, first clearing out the room then step by step getting closer to civilisation, plumbing, a sink, shelving, wash boards, and of cause our reinvention of a washing machine. We took the drum out of an old washing machine and created a hand-crank washing machine so volunteers can now properly wash and agitate their clothes, as long as they have the arms strength for the spin cycle! We used old pipes to create a plumbing system so the water is disposed of properly, and not just poured onto the floor like the previous laundry facility. Now, the washing area is located inside the same room as all the clothes line so it is a mere 1 meter walk to hang clothes up, instead of the 100 meter walk previously. Of course, volunteers are asked to use biodegradable and environmentally friendly soaps so we do our part to keep this island paradise pristine. Thanks to all of the members of OTC, now future volunteers have a much more civilised laundry facility at Cap Ternay! 

I would like to introduce to you GVI’s one and only, real life, lovingly created laundrette. Well done guys – We did it J

-Heather, Divemaster Intern

The hand crank washing machine

Heather demonstrating how to use the washing machine

The drain

The piping

The many helping hands

Mural on wall, painted by OTC volunteers