ELANCO Source Water Collaborative
On September 27, 2017, the Eastern Lancaster County (ELANCO) Source Water Collaborative (SWC) will hold its Inaugural Drinking Water Day in Terre Hill, PA. The event will be split into two sessions; a morning session geared towards school-aged children, and an evening session for adults in the community.
The morning session will feature several educational booths, where school children in the community can learn about where their drinking water comes from, and how it can be protected from contamination. Elementary school children in the public school system, and children who attend school in one-room school houses throughout the region are invited to attend.
The focus of the evening session of Drinking Water Day is a private well water testing opportunity, where members of the community can bring their well water to be tested by Penn State Extension.
The ELANCO region is mostly rural, heavily agricultural, and has a large Amish and Mennonite community. A large portion of residents rely on private wells for household and drinking water.
The ELANCO SWC is an effort consisting of local, state, federal, public, and private organizations, whose goal is to implement source water protection strategies in the ELANCO region. They focus on implementing strategies which reduce pollutants, especially nitrates, in local drinking water sources. SSM has been a collaborative partner since 2012.
The group has been hugely successful in reaching out to the community in their educational efforts, and adding a Drinking Water Day to these efforts will add an interactive element to their educational techniques.