Written by Emery Letendre, PWW intern, Vermont
Oscar Armando Andino started working with Pure Water for the World’s Honduras team in early 2008. Today, he is PWW’s Water Expertise & Training (WET) Centre Coordinator and oversees all of the organization’s WASH training and consulting services in Honduras. He has made invaluable contributions to the work of PWW, helping to address the needs so many Hondurans have for clean water and proper sanitation practices that support healthy communities.
In March 2008, Oscar, a native of Honduras, joined PWW as an administrative assistant. He was mentored by Country Director, Maria Inestroza, who helped him to identify his unique talents and develop his skills.
As he continued with PWW, his hard work and adaptability led to his initial promotion to Project Coordinator and then later to WET Centre Coordinator. Oscar appreciates the opportunities he has had to grow and contribute to the important work of PWW, making difficult choices to meet the organization’s goals.
“I have to make hard decisions regarding staff, budgets, and workshops with almost every activity in my job,” Oscar says. This can be very difficult at times, but, as he has grown as a leader, these difficult decisions have become easier. He focuses on using the resources available to provide the most benefits to the people of Honduras.
Oscar recognizes the many skills that PWW has helped him to develop and improve upon, and he is forever grateful to the organization’s people for pushing him to be his best.
“I have been working for 10 years at PWW and have had the opportunity to meet a lot of interesting people. I have learned a lot from different people and organizations,” Oscar shares. “With the help of PWW and CAWST (Centre for Affordable Water and Sanitation Technology), I have gained a lot of skills, including active listening, public speaking, adapting, critically observing, desire to learn, and leadership. ”
Prior to working with PWW, Oscar never thought he would have the opportunity to work in a job where he loves both the work he is doing and the people with whom he works. He feels lucky to be able to work for a non-profit organization that helps to improve the lives of the people in his country.
Oscar did not fully understand the extent to which water-related issues were a problem in his country until he went to Trojes, with the PWW team, and witnessed the many people who lack clean water and proper sanitation techniques. With this experience, he feels even more grateful to be part of such an impactful organization.
Oscar has seen the lasting impact that PWW’s work has had on Honduran communities and describes how he sees people’s behaviors change once they have completed the WASH workshops and received their filters. He recognizes how much the work of PWW has benefited the communities simply by providing the tools and education to improve sanitation and access to clean water.
“The people who are benefiting from the PWW projects are not only getting clean water; they are also getting an education. The new knowledge is something that will last for the rest of their lives.”
Oscar has also been instrumental in helping to improve and enhance PWW’s volunteer trips to Honduras. His friendly disposition and smile are a very warm welcome to the volunteers, and his training experience helps each volunteer have a greater understanding about the impact they are making possible. Oscar is truly an invaluable member of the PWW Honduras team!