Use these lesson extensions to continue discussion of this topic in the classroom.
Social entrepreneur Trevor Field began working with communities to install the PlayPump because he wanted to address an important social problem. Break students into teams of two or three. Challenge each team to identify and research a problem facing members of your local community. Teams should brainstorm innovative approaches to solving that problem, decide on the most viable solution, and then present their problem and solution to the other students. If class time allows, have students vote on their favorite solution and work to implement it as a class, keeping in mind the lessons learned from the PlayPump initiative.
Investigate the effectiveness of other projects aimed at solving community water issues. FRONTLINE/World provides links to the websites of a variety of aid organizations’ working in water-stressed regions and using a diversity of water programs. Challenge students to choose an organization and try to monitor where donations to it go by reading annual reports, the organization’s website, blogs by staffers, media reports about the project (often available online), and other sources of information. They should then write a paper that recommends whether or not they would donate to that organization and why or why not.
Connect the lessons learned during the PlayPump rollout to those being learned by other foreign aid initiatives. Show the class the FRONTLINE/World story Haiti: The Aid Dilemma and/or POV’s Good Fortune and discuss what steps aid organizations should take to protect the long-term needs of the local communities being served.