Sunday started out at 5:30 in the morning with a walk up the hill on the backside of IIT Bombay campus led by our teammate Vivek. After about an hour walk capped off with a semi treacherous hillside ascent, we were rewarded with stunning views of the campus and surrounding city. Thankfully, by starting early, we beat the heat that has continued unabated throughout our stay here. Everyone is saying that the monsoons will start any day and take away the heat and humidity, this, however, has not yet happened.

Afterwards, Acara and ReachOut met with a vice president from ICIC bank, India’s largest private banking firm. He worked to impliment the ATM in India and was interested in helping both Acara and ReachOut further their aims in India. It was a productive meeting and we hope to continue contact.

During the middle of the day we took our final trip into the slums to visit a rain water harvesting / groundwater recharge system very similar to that which was proposed by the U of MN Acara Challenge team WaterLink. We met with the CBO in charge of maintenance of the installation. Basically, the system collects rainwater from one large roof that was installed over the feastival grounds in the middle of the community. The water is collected in gutters and transported into a well. The well is constructed using stones in a range of grain sizes, charcoal, and lime to create a type of activated water filter. There is a hand pump on the inside of the well which the community uses to draw up water. In this way, they were able to provide disease free water to suppliment the communities water supply. Even though it had been nearly 9 months since the last monsoon, water was produced from the well after only a few pumps. We were very impressed by the system.

In the evening, we had the pleasure of being invited over to Neel’s house (from the U of MN team WaterLink). Neel ordered a huge bowl of chicken biryani from a local vendor and we enjoyed a variety of side dishes prepared by his mother. We also were joined by two of Neel’s highschool friends. After a very satisfying meal, we watched some cricket and took a taxi ride back to our dorm at IIT.