The Wayuu descendant who bets on his community

A Santandereano from Father Wayuu designs a method of pumping water to bring this liquid to his community with solar energy

The Wayuu descendant who bets on his community

The Wayuu community is an indigenous tribe that sits on the peninsula of La Guajira shared by Colombia and Venezuela. They are a culture that still preserves several of their traditions such as crafts, clothing, settlements, organization and language. Despite its mysticism and its ancestral knowledge, this community has high rates of poverty, lack of education and malnutrition. Additionally, a large part of this population is distributed throughout the desert of Alta Guajita (north and east).

This is the reason Lëmnec Tiller, a Santanderean from Father Wayuu, decided to work for this town. Tiller, who is in the last semester of Mechatronic Engineering of the Autonomous University of Bucaramanga (UNAB), developed a project with which he will be able to pump potable water from wells through renewable energies.

"When I saw the need in the place, I said it was time to act, first the Foundation created a school to attack the worst problem, which is the ignorance of the people, since they do not know the benefits, duties and rights as Colombians (...) is being given education to some 60 children and several adults who need literacy "explains the student to Latin American Post.

Later, after school, Tiller focuses "on the main need of the region, which is Water, which is why I focused on the area of ​​the middle and upper Guajira, and throughout the Guajira peninsula there is poverty, but This is where the highest pockets of extreme poverty are due to the infertility of the earth and the inclemency of the climate (...) I want to develop something where the Indian only has to open a key and take the water from a system storage ".

The project is a pumping system in deep wells for the community of Majayutpana located in the upper Guajira, in the municipality of Uiribia.

According to the entrepreneur, "the Guajira peninsula is characterized by a good quality of solar radiation, so I developed a technology friendly to the environment that can be replicated in other ranches or Wayuu urban centers."

To build one of these water pumps, Lëmnec needs 11 million pesos (about $ 3,800USD). This has a much lower cost than other similar projects that cost between 60 or 70 million pesos (around 23,000 dollars), according to Lëmnec.

According to the student of Mechatronic Engineering, "the indigenous Wayuu has water reservoirs called Jagüeyes, this is where they look for water for their daily consumption, but in these Jagüeyes the water is stagnant, does not allow oxygenation and is also used by all kinds of animals, so it can be harmful to the health of humans "In addition," the Wayuu Indian, usually raise their children as young adults, then they do not enjoy their childhood and put them to perform tasks of the For example, they send them to fetch water, and recently it happened that a 4-year-old boy and a 12-year-old girl went to look for water, and both drowned "assures the Santandereano of Wayuu descent. Then the project seeks to prevent these accidents from happening.

The foundation also carries non-perishable food, clothing or didactic elements for the community. Wayuuda receives contributions in the savings account of Bancolombia # 780-579587-73 to buy food and items for the community.


Latin American Post | Santiago Gómez Hernández

Translated from "El descendiente Wayuu que le apuesta a su comunidad"