The ongoing battle to combat COVID-19 in Barbados has strongly reinforced the need to make clean, drinking water easily accessible to everyone. Despite setbacks in recent months, the Hydrate Barbados team at Newport Water has held the relentless and prevailing outlook that this current situation will pass and in fact that there is a strong bounce back coming.
As we continue to turn the corner, we are now able to safely launch our 7th Hydrate Barbados station on the Hastings Boardwalk. Sponsor, Consolidated Finance have been eagerly awaiting its installation to ensure that the many patrons who utilize this boardwalk daily can have free access to this vital resource.
The Hydrate Barbados programme seeks to empower individuals and corporations to be champions for change and foster good habits, as we continue to support the sustainable development goal 6 of water and sanitation for all by 2030. We at Newport Water are privileged to work with and share the optimism of like-minded organizations like sponsor, Consolidated Finance and the National Conservation Commission, who have graciously allowed our second public station to be placed here. Through this partnership, we are giving people the very best in amenities, protecting our environment and making Barbados a world-class place to live, work and play.
World Water Day
On Monday, March 22, we marked World Water Day with a theme of “Valuing Water”, and with the timing of launching this station, we felt the need to offer more. We have specially included alkaline water at this refill point, which has a higher pH level than regular drinking water. The health benefits range from improving metabolism, digestion, and bone health, to slowing aging and offering other detoxifying properties. We observed that even throughout the period of national pause, persons continued to frequent the Hastings Boardwalk for the purpose of daily exercise and wellness, so we know that the users of this new hydration station will utilize it wisely and seek to avoid wasting this precious and limited resource.
Our other stations in 5 schools and 1 public space have made an immeasurable impact over the past year, reaching 83,746 bottle fills thus far. This number would have been considerably higher if our students had not unfortunately been schooling remotely this past term. Nevertheless, sponsors of these stations, Barbados Public Workers Co-operative Credit Union, First Caribbean International Bank and Rock Hard Cement, have maintained their commitment to supporting, impacting and enhancing our communities across Barbados. Witnessing students and individuals quickly develop the habit of walking with their reusable water bottles and filling up daily, after having their station installed, has proven the value of the Hydrate Barbados Programme to these organizations. They have never surrendered their mission throughout this pandemic. We all remain optimistic and future-focused as we have another planned launch in the Constitution River Bus Terminal in just two weeks and continue to seek out sponsors for other promising locations, like Sheraton Mall.