Pick Your Community: | Hopkins | Muhlenberg | Daviess | Christian | Fayette | Henderson | Lakes | McCracken | Warren | Webster

Hoffman Institute Researches West African Water Crisis

 

 

well1 500

BOWLING GREEN, Ky. (3/25/13) – In February 2013, Hoffman Environmental Research Institute staff member and graduate student Jonathan (Joneo) Oglesby journeyed to Niger, West Africa, to conduct preliminary thesis research with the Songhai people.

The focus of the trip was to gain a better understanding of how the Songhai cope with the water cycle, sterilization of water, water sanitation and water hygiene.
 
Oglesby conducted surveys and interviewed workers in remote villages along the Niger River. The data acquired will be used as the foundation for future thesis work that will include the creation and dissemination of water education materials for the Songhai. The goal is their eventual dissemination to other Least Developed Countries in the region and around the world, including to a second study site at Gales Point, Manatee, in Belize starting this summer.
 
Through his research, Oglesby is working with his advisor, Dr. Leslie North, to develop and evaluate successful avenues for informal education practices in improving water education in these communities to promote sustainability and water resource protection, as well as to improve economic and educational opportunities through capacity building. He will use data visualization techniques incorporating science and art to cut across culture, language and geography to teach these communities about water sanitation and conservation.
 
Niger is a landlocked state of West Africa located mostly within the Sahara desert. It relies heavily on foreign aid to maintain sustenance, existing in one of the harshest political and environmental climates in the world. Pneumonia, malaria and diarrhea, coupled with malnutrition and food insecurity, give rise to high mortality rates. “I want to empower groups in developing nations, in particular the women and girls of the Songhai, by educating them about water,” Oglesby said. “I’m passionate about water and passionate about the Songhai. I decided to start here and start now.”
 
Many of the women Oglesby interviewed during this initial research trip spoke of the daily arduous task of carrying water to and from the river to their homes, often starting before dawn and not finishing until after dark. Some even explained it’s as if they never stop. Most gather water from sources that are heavily used and negatively impacted by people and animals. The water is then used without any treatment for consumption. For many communities in Niger, water collection takes up so much time that women and children are often unable to find time to go to school or work to support their families.

well2

 

Oglesby will return soon to continue his work and envisions a positive, if audacious, endeavor. “I can’t change the world,” he noted. “But I hope I can change the quality of it, one person at a time.”
 
He is starting a website, www.fofohari.org, as the foundation for an organization to address water education for developing countries. The educational tools developed and created for this research will be disseminated through this site, and it will be used to further communicate techniques for water education in developing areas.
 
Dr. North, Associate Director of the Hoffman Institute, said: “Joneo’s research embodies the true spirit of integrating science and education to make a difference in communities. The geography of water education is understudied, and certainly of pressing importance as water resources diminish in the face of population growth and climate change.
 
“This will be a great step in working to develop and study effective informal education tools aimed toward understanding how to overcome these spatial and cultural differences,” she said.

Dr. David Keeling, head of WKU’s Department of Geography and Geology Department, noted: “Faculty and students in the Hoffman Institute exemplify the WKU spirit of international reach, with active research projects underway across the planet. Science is of little use practically unless it can change people’s lives for the better. Joneo’s research is a wonderful example of how addressing a resource such as water, that we take so much for granted here in the U.S., in a developing country like Niger can literally save lives and boost the capacity of women and children to build sustainable communities for the future.”

well3

For information about the project, contact Jonathan Oglesby at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or Dr. Leslie North at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .
 
SurfKY News
Information provided by WKU
Photo provided by Western Kentucky University

© Copyright 2014 SurfKY News Group, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, or rewritten without permission. SurfKY News encourages you to share this story by using one of the social media links below.

3/12 - 718 switched from reg 2 to hopkins only
3/13 - 16
447 on Feb 15th (Val ad ended) switched to kid books
CHANGED TO SIMPLE AD ON 2/19 619 HITS

Stock Report

1 DOW 16,408.54
-16.31 (-0.10%)    
2 S&P 1,864.85
+2.54 (0.14%)    
3 NASDAQ 4,095.52
+9.29 (0.23%)    
3/12 - 718 switched from reg 2 to hopkins only
3/13 - 16
447 on Feb 15th (Val ad ended) switched to kid books
CHANGED TO SIMPLE AD ON 2/19 619 HITS
3/12 - 718 switched from reg 2 to hopkins only
3/13 - 16
447 on Feb 15th (Val ad ended) switched to kid books
CHANGED TO SIMPLE AD ON 2/19 619 HITS

In Other News...

Meth Lab Found by KSP, Sheriff in Elkton

ELKTON, Ky. (4/18/14) — The Todd County Sheriff's Department and Kentucky State Police arrested two Elkton residents on… Read More

Friends of Lake Malone Busy Hiding 1,500 Easter Eggs

DUNMOR, Ky. (4/18/14) — The Friends of Lake Malone State Park are hosting an Easter Egg Hunt Saturday, April 19, at the… Read More
3/12 - 718 switched from reg 2 to hopkins only
3/13 - 16
447 on Feb 15th (Val ad ended) switched to kid books
CHANGED TO SIMPLE AD ON 2/19 619 HITS

Most Read This Week (Site-Wide)

April 16, 2014 19304

UPDATE- Sheriff's Office Following Leads…

in Top Stories by Taylor Riley, SurfKY News Reporter
April 17, 2014 4275

KSP Nabs St. Charles Man Wanted by U.S.…

in Top Stories by Trooper Stu Recke
April 15, 2014 3144

Police Searching for Sureway's 'Baby…

in Top Stories by Taylor Riley, SurfKY News Reporter
April 16, 2014 3079

Sheriff's Deputies Nab Central City…

in Top Stories by Sheriff Curtis McGehee
April 15, 2014 2782

Multi-Agency Investigation Leads to Drug…

in Top Stories by Lori Blakeley

Most Read Stories from Hopkins County

April 17, 2014 4275

KSP Nabs St. Charles Man Wanted by U.S.…

in Top Stories by Trooper Stu Recke
April 15, 2014 3144

Police Searching for Sureway's 'Baby…

in Top Stories by Taylor Riley, SurfKY News Reporter
April 15, 2014 2782

Multi-Agency Investigation Leads to Drug…

in Top Stories by Lori Blakeley
April 15, 2014 1079

State Approves $500K for Hopkins Archery…

in Top Stories by Rebecca Hanchett
April 18, 2014 995

Talking Teen Trashed Telephone Pole,…

in Top Stories by MPD

Most Read Stories from Owensboro

April 15, 2014 1731

Owensboro Police Investigate Auto Accident

in News by Michael Hathaway
April 15, 2014 1372

Owensboro Parks Offers Tennis Lessons

in News by Britni Bunn
April 15, 2014 1042

Happenings and Meetings Owensboro

in News by Dennis Beard, SurfKY News
April 16, 2014 848

New Home Health Care Opens in Owensboro

in News by Dennis Beard, SurfKY News
April 15, 2014 782

OPD’s Annual 5K Run and Police Awareness…

in News by Owensboro Police Department

Most Read Stories from Muhlenberg County

April 16, 2014 3079

Sheriff's Deputies Nab Central City…

in Top Stories by Sheriff Curtis McGehee
April 15, 2014 2050

'Walk Right Back' An Everly Brother's…

in Top Stories by Paul McRee, SurfKY News Reporter
April 15, 2014 1895

Local MCHS Students Train at Job Corps

in Top Stories by Karen Robinson
April 15, 2014 1545

Thumbpickers Unite at Mose Rager Day

in Top Stories by Paul McRee, SurfKY News Reporter
April 16, 2014 1177

South Carrollton Woman Injured in Head-on…

in Top Stories by Trooper Stu Recke

SurfKY News Group, Inc. Central Office & Printing Division
1125 Nebo Rd.  •  Madisonville, KY 42431  •  270.452.2249 (fax)
Main Number: 270.452.2727 (phone)  •  Printing Division Direct Line: 270.821.8600 (phone)

SurfKY Owensboro News Bureau
920 Frederica St. / Suite 210  •  Owensboro, KY 42301  •  270.683-8060 (phone)


Contact a member of our staff: www.surfky.com/contact
Copyright © 2014 SurfKY News Group, Inc.  •  Terms of Use  •  Site Map

social 06social 21social 22social 04social 03