Tuesday, September 10, 2024
9:45 AM - 10:15 AM
Location Name
Community Engineering Corps - Striving Towards Equitable Access to Improved Water and Sanitation
Engineering & Construction

There are over 2 million Americans who live without running water and basic plumbing, and Black, Lantix, and Native American households are disproportionately impacted by this lack of adequate infrastructure. This challenge presents an opportunity for technical professionals to volunteer to work hand-in-hand with these communities on the development of solutions that help them secure their right to safe, accessible, and affordable drinking water and sanitation. Community Engineering Corps is a partnership between the American Water Works Association, Engineers Without Borders USA, and the American Society of Civil Engineers that leverages the expertise and humanity found within our member organizations to support underserved communities with gaining access to improved infrastructure. This Community Engineering Corps session features an informational presentation about the Community Engineering Corps program and opportunities to provide pro-bono consulting services to underserved communities, followed by a case study highlighting the work being done by Community Engineering Corps in an effort to move the needle on water and sanitation justice for underserved communities in the US. The case study presented will highlight the Community Engineering Corps project in Cherokee Hills, TN completed by the KY/TN AWWA Section. The KY/TN AWWA Section partnered with Communities Unlimited, a Rural Community Partnership Program Region, to assist a small, overburdened, and under resourced utility district with a comprehensive system evaluation which included an inspection of the existing water source and treatment process and provided recommendations for improvements and optimization. In addition, they performed a 1-day workshop on water audits for the employees of Cherokee Hills Utility District. Over the almost two years that the CECorps project team worked with Cherokee Hills Utility District, they were able to increase the utility’s technical and managerial capacity. The utility is using the reports and recommendations to determine their best path forward.