Saturday, August 21, 2010

Pinthaliya water for living

An unnoticed but a very important component in the water culture of Sri Lanka is the pinthaliya, the traditional drinking water pot placed and maintained by the communities by the way side in those good olden days. The intention of placing a pinthaliya in a village was to treat water as sacred and valuable. The water was purified by the traditional water pot and people who passed by on the road sides had free access to this pure drinking water to quench their thirst. Naturally that was a way of ensuring preservation of water resources and preventing it from being polluted. Reinstating the usage of the pinthaliya will not only be a way of having safe drinking water, but also a way of reviving the age old pottery industry, which was undermine to import unsafe aluminum utensils. Pinthaliya therefore is identified by Swarna Hansa Foundation as a sustainable indigenous solution to safe drinking water problem.

Thus Project Pinthaliya was added to the "Water for Living" programme which is now being implemented as a trilateral approach to the drinking water problem in Sri Lanka. Swarna Hansa Foundation has encouraged traditional pottery artists to construct pinthali with the intention of reviving this ancient art. Swarna Hansa Foundation distributed 500 pinthali in Colombo South, Galewela, Galgamuwa and Wewniya, in addition to earlier 500 distributed mainly in the Southern coastal areas of Sri Lanka. These were distributed among temples, medical centres, preschools and community centres, taking the message "safe drinking water ensures health".


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