‘Women, Water & Leadership’ Education & Empowerment in Long Tanyit, Sarawak

Long Tanyit in the Belaga District of Sarawak is one of two locations in Malaysia to be supported by the SI President’s Appeal, ‘Women, Water & Leadership’.  This progressive project is spearheaded by Soroptimist International Region of Malaysia (SIROM), and the Penan villagers are heavily involved in the leadership and management of the project – their vested interest helping to ensure its ongoing sustainability.

Above: Short clip of the women welders creating the stands for the water tanks. 

Photo: Welding the frame for the water tanks

Photo: Welding the frame for the water tanks

We are delighted to report that work is now gathering pace and the development of a rainwater harvesting and filtration system is progressing extremely well.

The five Penan girls studying for a Diploma in Welding in Kuala Lumpur have returned to Long Tanyit to put their new skills to use, and the work they are doing on the project will be considered practical (industrial) training towards their Diploma.


Facilitating education and career progression, the young welders are now working with the contractor and his team constructing metal support stands for the water tanks, which will store water for the villagers to use during the drought season (see the short video above).

Once this phase is completed, work will begin on the reconstruction and strengthening of an existing dam, together with the installation of new pipes and a gravity-fed water system. The system will allow for water to be fed directly to the village for drinking and sanitation and will support an organic farm. The community will be educated in the use of the system and trained in organic farming techniques.

Three Soroptimists including Joanne and Pushpa from the SIROM Water Committee and Anne from SI Kuching, made a visit this month to Long Tanyit to check on the progress and took these wonderful photographs. Thank you for keeping us updated with the progress and best of luck from all of us!


Photo: Installing the water tanks


Photo: Installing the water tanks

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