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Today’s news stories
WSC Marks Water Month with Annual High School Competition
WSC Marks Water Month with Annual High School Competition
-Winner will win a scholarship to an accredited college
-Winner will win a scholarship to an accredited college
or university of their choosing.
Nassau, New Providence – Water is the source of life for all living things. Humans, animals and vegetation all rely on water for survival. It is no surprise then, that many of the world’s greatest civilizations began as settlements near water; in fact, population growth and distribution have been intimately linked to the availability of fresh water for centuries. While water continues to be the world’s most precious resource, it is also without question one of the world’s most undervalued resources as well.
With the world population expected to grow from a little over 7 billion today, to 8 billion by 2025; putting additional strain on water needs the global community has begun to spread the message of conservation of water sources. This is no less true of the Bahamas and of the Water and Sewerage Corporation.
In May of each year the Water and Sewerage Corporation celebrates Water Month offering water-related tips, resources, contests, incentives and activities to its customers across the country. This year's theme: Water and the Environment: How do they Coexist? encourages Bahamians to take a look at how their water usage impacts the wider environment and conversely how their everyday habits with respect to waste disposal and other matters impact the safety and quality of our local water supply.
“Many individuals may not immediately make the connection between the environment and the water they drink or the water that comes out of the faucet at home,” explained Public Affairs Manager Visna Armbrister.
“This year’s theme will hopefully bridge that stream of consciousness for Bahamians and make everyone more aware of how lifestyle choices impact both the environment and our water and get people to start making better decisions all around” she said.
Over the years the WSC’s observance of water month has become synonymous with the corporation’s annual essay and video competitions which give high school aged children the opportunity to participate in the process and learn how their own actions, or lack thereof, can impact our world. Last year, Michael Miller of Queens College took top honors in the Essay Competition while Waynisha Saunders of CV Bethel was the winner of the video competition, which has reached over 24000 views on the WSC Facebook page.
“Reaching young people is particularly important,” noted Armbrister. “They are the ones that will inherit this planet when older generations pass on, they need an awareness of the world around them and this competition is way to educate and inspire them to get involved even at an early age.”
The competition is open to high school students in Grades 10 and 11 and requires students to submit essays or videos based on this year’s theme. As they did last year, the winners of this year’s competition will receive laptops, tablets with the top prize of a scholarship to an accredited college or university of their choosing. Rules and details can be found on the website at www.wsc.com.bs
WSC & BTC Collaborate to Provide Major Savings for Customers
Nassau, New Providence – A collaboration between the Water & Sewerage Corporation (WSC) and the Bahamas Telecommunications Company (BTC) spelled two days of discounts, prizes and surprises for WSC customers.
The Pop-Up Partnership Promotion kicked into high gear on March 28th and 29th, as scores of customers flocked to WSC headquarters on Thompson Boulevard to take advantage of the event, which by design was meant to afford WSC customers an opportunity to be served by both companies in one location.
Customers of the Water & Sewerage Corporation have witnessed firsthand the transformations which have taken place at the corporation in recent years. From the increase of water flow, improved repair services and now the introduction of the world class mobile app and their most recent paperless billing system, WSC has continued to live up to its mandate of being committed to growth and quality of service.
As a service oriented company in its own right, it made sense that WSC would partner with BTC on the Pop-Up Promotion concept. “WSC is pleased to partner with BTC to promote their products and
our services since we are both very customer oriented companies” said Public Affairs Manager Visna Armbrister.
“Our primary focus during this special two-day promotion is our ' Go Paperless Campaign'. Our over-all goal is to get to 20,000 email addresses from our customers which simply allows them to receive their billing statements electronically on their smart phones, pc's or tablets” she explained.
Customers participating in the two-day event were not only able to take advantage of amazing discounts ranging from half off new water and sewerage service accounts as well as ten dollars off for signing up for the corporation’s new email notification service, but were also entered to win a brand-new Samsung J2 Prime Cellphone too.
This renewed focus on technology is just part of a recent push by the corporation to modernize the type of service which Bahamians receive and includes the introduction of online bill payments which provide improved efficiency and new levels of convenience for customers. This in turn goes hand in hand with the work being done by BTC, particularly for their younger and more tech savvy customers many of whom have come to rely on their mobile devices as an integral part of their everyday lives.
“This is BTC country and its important for Bahamians to know that we are a company committed to making their lives easier through our products through our products and services noted Brittney Johnson-Petit, of BTC Franchise Operations.
Winner of the Samsung J2 Prime phone, Ian Graham was thrilled to learn that he had won just for signing up for E-notification and was pleased that to have a ten dollar credit applied to his account. Singing up for E-notification is quick, simple and convenient. WSC encourages its customer who have not done so to visit its website: www.wsc.com.bs and sign up today. Help us go paperless while you enjoy a more easy and convenient way of doing business with
Good Deeds for a Good Cause
Nassau, New Providence – Committed to their roles as good corporate citizens, Miya Bahamas and the Water & Sewerage Corporation teamed up with their employees to participate in the annual good deeds day, jumping at the opportunity to give back to the community in a real and tangible way.
Good Deeds Day is a MIYA annual tradition which launched in 2007 and has swept the globe encouraging persons from all cultures, backgrounds, and countries to join forces and give of themselves for the benefit of others and the planet. In 2017, ninety-three countries – including The Bahamas – participated in over 20 thousand projects making this year the largest and most far reaching day of global good.
“If people could unite around good. If every person does something to make a difference, and communities, organizations, and corporations give of their time and skill to help others, lives will be improved, and our world would be a better one” noted MIYA Bahamas Project Manager, Goncalo Delgado.
This year marked the fourth time that the Water & Sewerage Corporation has partnered with Miya for Good Deeds Day with the event becoming a staple in both companies’ annual calendars. On April 7, the volunteers from both organizations took time to improve the Stapledon School gardens and playground areas as well as the remove of all debris which had accumulated Hurricane Matthew in 2016.
“We chose the Stapledon School this year because they cater to children with varying degrees of mental disabilities,” said Andrea Forbes of Miya Bahamas. “This month is Autism Awareness Month, so we thought it a good idea to come in and do what we can to assist the school and its students.”
Helping organize these events, Visna Armbrister WSC Public Affairs and Customer Service Manager has been at the forefront of each Good Deeds Day. “This is now an annual event for us at WSC, and its something we always look forward
doing. Our staff is eager to help and assist our community. We are more than just a company doing business, we really appreciate our community and our country” she explained.
To learn more about Good Deeds Day or to join this annual event visit www.good-deeds-day.org and join the campaign to do good!
WSC Continues Water Supply Improvements in the Family Islands
Implementing its CDB Water Supply Improvement program in the Family Islands
Nassau, Bahamas – The Water and Sewerage Corporation’s (WSC) vision is: ‘Committed to Growth, Committed to Quality’. True to its mandate to provide accessible and affordable water to all its customers across the archipelago, the Corporation continues to undertake a series of water supply improvements on several Family Islands.
The Corporation has signed a $1.69Million contract with Bahamas Hot Mix Co. Ltd to extend and improve water supply to San Salvador. The award follows a tender process that started in August 2016. The scope of works consists of the supply and installation of over 9 miles of water main and 160 service connections and works are expected to take approximately 8 months to complete. It will impact communities from Cockburn Town to Sandy Point.
Chairman Leslie Miller indicated that ”the project will provide high quality piped water service to some areas of San Salvador for the first time and is a part of the Government’s commitment to provide for the needs of its citizens throughout the Family Islands”.
The project is a component of the recently approved $41 Million program partially funded with $28 million from the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB). In addition to San Salvador, the Water Supply Improvement Project will also address water needs in the islands of Cat Island, Crooked Island, Eleuthera, Long Island, New Providence, and South Andros. A contract for South Andros was signed in November 2016, and the New Providence components are expected to be completed in February 2017.
Additionally, WSC signed an Engineering Services Consultancy (ESC) contract with ACO JV (Bahamas) Limited for the construction supervision of the CDB Water Supply Improvement projects. The joint venture (JV) consists of three Bahamian firms – Caribbean Civil Group Limited, Operational Management & Engineering Services Limited, and Applied Consulting and Engineering Limited – and the contract signing follows a tender process that started in June 2016.
Services under the contract include procurement advisory, review and approval of designs, and supervision of construction activities, to ensure construction of the project infrastructure to a high quality. Another critical aspect of the consultancy is to ensure that environmental impacts are mitigated, and that climate change considerations are taken into account during the design and execution of the works.
The contracts for remaining CDB Water Supply Improvement Projects are anticipated to be signed throughout 2017. These will cover infrastructure works in Cat Island, Crooked Island, Eleuthera, and Long Island in addition to other associated services.
PINEWOOD RESIDENTS GIVEN FREE CITY WATER SIGN UP FOR A LIMITED TIME
NASSAU, BAHAMAS - In keeping with its commitment to providing reliable and safe water supply to all communities around the country, The Water & Sewerage Corporation (WSC) recently teamed up with nurses within the public healthcare system to promote the health benefits of city water usage, particularly within close knit communities like Pinewood.
For the past two years, the Corporation has embarked on a house to house initiative in the residential area of Pinewood Gardens, to encourage well users in the area to make the switch to city water. Across the world, water borne illnesses remains a major concern particularly in the event of possible fresh water contamination, which can be caused by natural disasters like Hurricanes or man-made hazards that leak into the water table.
“Being on personal wells, does not guarantee that their water supply is safe,” explained WSC Public Affairs
Manager, Visna Armbrister. “WSC trained staff monitor our water 24/7, we have professional chemical engineers who are trained on chlorination and our water is approved and meets the above international water standards,” she said.
Of the 650 homes in the area, less than half of the residents have agreed to sign on to city water. The corporation is currently in the process of completing major mains improvement in the Pinewood area and once completed, the new infrastructure will provide piped water to scores of homes for the first time in history.
As an additional bonus the millions of infrastructures work is being carried out at no cost to the customers. “Right now sign up for WSC Pinewood is free,” said Armbrister! “ If these residents choose to sign up after the work is done they will have to pay $714 dollars plus VAT to get instillation to WSC water.”
The corporation encourages all interested households to make the switch now to avoid incurring any personal costs. “We’re working every-day to make sure we give people clean, safe, reliable water supply that’s what we want people to know about,” Armbrister noted. “We have also integrated on line bill payment, e-billing and more to make our services so much easier then self-water supply.”
Pinewood customers should contact the Customer Service Department at 242-302-5599 if they missed the sign-up visits or reach out to Corporation via their Facebook page or the corporation’s website at www.wsc.com/bs. For those not in Pinewood the corporation is currently offering 50%off sign up services to any customers.
Sea Breeze Resident Decorates and WINS!
Nassau, Bahamas – With the Christmas decorations coming down on houses across the country, one happy resident may show off her décor a little bit past the twelfth day of Christmas. Sandra Bain, a long time resident of Sea Breeze, was judged as the winner of the Water and Sewerage Corporation’s (WSC) and Miya Bahamas’ Christmas Decoration Contest 2016.
“I found out about the contest after visiting WSC Thompson Blvd to pay my water bill,” said Bain. “I love decorating, its been a hobby of mine for years but I also love seeing the joy it brings to people; especially the children. I get a kick from seeing the excitement from adults too.”
Mrs. Bain was among several New Providence residents who entered to win the thousand-dollar prize and whose homes were judged by an internal panel of three judges who noted that Mrs. Bain’s house “decorations was impeccable!”
Bain who does her more elaborate home decorating at Christmas starts her theme planning at the end of summer, with her completed décor up by the first week of December. “We often see and hear people slowing down as they pass to look at the decorations, some even stop to take photos. I’ve even seen families stopping to take their Christmas photos!”
The winning house depicted the spirit of Christmas through its lights, decorations and how well the designs were put together,” said Judge Ingrid Strachan. “Her home created an ambiance that said welcome Christmas.”
Bain will now start working on her 2017 theme and is hopeful the Corporation will continue this contest, as she loved winning! Bain planned to use some of her winnings to continue doing the things that she loves, helping people, as she noted there are so many less fortunate. She will also be paying some bills and purchasing some more decorations of course!
Chairman Miller Commends the WSC Staff for their commitment during
Nassau, Bahamas - Last week, the Water and Sewerage Corporation hosted its Annual Employee Recognition and Awards Ceremony at St. Joseph’s Parish Hall. It was an opportunity for the Management of the Corporation to say thank you to its employees for the service they have provided throughout the year.
The Ceremony, hosted by Mr. Tyrone Miller, WSC Manager of Billing Processing and Adjustment Department, in the Business Operation Division was very entertaining and was attended by many of the Corporations’ board members and employees as well as Chairman, Leslie Miller, MP. Mr. Miller spoke on behalf of the Minister responsible for the Water and Sewerage Corporation, the Hon. Phillip ‘Brave’ Davis and thanked the staff of the Corporation for their dedication throughout the year, especially during Hurricane Matthew.
“During Hurricane Matthew, lights were out, cable was off, phones were down but the water kept flowing,” noted Miller. “And that’s all thanks to you. Your dedication to this Corporation, making sure things run smoothly during such a difficult time is definitely an inspiration to all the other corporations and utility providers in The Bahamas.”
The Chairman also warned the management and staff of the corporation to not get complacent. “Don’t let that go to y’all head though, there’s still lots of work left to be done, “Miller chided. “The Corporation today supplies a little more than 50% of the homes in New Providence with running water so come 2017, it will be my goal, with your help to increase that number.”
During the course of the afternoon, the Corporation also recognized several employees for their outstanding work in 2016. Two such employees were, Arnold Josey and Wallace Munroe, of WSC Customer Service. Josey and Munroe were recognized for their outstanding work, going above and beyond the call of duty to assist customers of the Corporation immediately following the passage of Hurricane Matthew.
In addition to the Customer Service Representative of the Year, the Corporation also honored its Long Service Award recipients. Mr. James McPhee, Foreman, Construction Department was presented with the Longest Serving Award and noted “Some people have asked me what keeps me going, it’s simple. Its seeing the smiles on people’s faces after you’ve help them with their problem. That is very rewarding for me.”
Closing out the formalities of the event was the Corporation’s General Manager, Mr. Glen Laville who used the opportunity to thank the employees of the Corporation for their dedication throughout the year. “Many times I know it was not easy but each of you always showed up, dedicated to the task at hand; even in the most difficult of situations,” said Laville. “So I am grateful to you for the work you have done throughout the year and will continue to do on behalf of the Water and Sewerage Corporation.”
Many of the employees expressed their gratitude to the Corporation for hosting the event and recognizing the hard work they do. One employee said, “it isn’t often the company you work for pulls out all the stops to make you feel special, or in this case, ‘like a star’ but it’s nice to get rewarded and recognized for the work that we do here at the Corporation.”
The event was filled with fun and laughter and the Corporation extends its thanks to event Chairperson, Ms. Ingrid Strachan, WSC Manager, Training Department, Human Resources Division and her Committee for putting on a stellar Employee Recognition and Awards Ceremony.
WSC Helps Light Up the Holidays
WSC Helps Light Up the Holidays
Nassau, Bahamas - Across The Bahamas, the holiday’s wouldn’t be complete without spending time with the family decorating your home to bring in the festive season. The Water and Sewerage Corporation wants to help spread more cheers this year by rewarding the best decorated house on the block.
Once again, the Corporation is hoping to spread Christmas cheer with its ‘Christmas House Decoration Contest’. The contest is open to all customers of the Water and Sewerage Corporation and is free to enter, but requires participants to sign an entry form before December 10th. Finding the form is easy on their website or Facebook page, but winning the grand prize of a $1,000 for the best decorated house means making your home dazzle.
According to Visna Armbrister, Public Affairs Manager at the Water and Sewerage Corporation, the judges of the Christmas House Decoration Contest will reward the customer with the grand prize money for the house that has the greatest “curb appeal”, based on the look of the exterior of the home from the street.
Armbrister further explained that houses will be judged in three categories, “i. unique design and creative use of lights and decorations; ii. display and placement of decorations and iii. overall presentation.” Adding, “we all have driven across the island and have seen some beautifully decorated homes, so we decided to reward one of our great WSC customers for the time and effort making their home shine bright. Surely everyone could use the extra thousand dollars in their pockets too.”
In addition to the grand prize money, the Corporation will also give the first 25 entries to the contest, one month of free service (valued at $25.00).
“We recognized that many communities and household are still in recovery mode after the hurricane and many are concentrating on home repairs,” said Armbrister. “But for those who can join in, we invite them to get into the Christmas Spirit and spread the joy of festivity with lights and decorations. We're hoping the Community will make an effort and join us as we spruce up and decorate for the season.”
The contest is also open to Family Island customers and local judges will be chosen to help find the best decorated home in The Bahamas.
Entry deadline is December 16th, 2016 with judging to be done December 20th through December 23rd 2016. with winners announced on Facebook.
Full entry rules and application forms are available on the Corporation’s website or at the Corporation head office on Thompson Blvd.
Nassau, Bahamas – The Water and Sewerage Corporation (WSC) signed a contract $5.6 million with Island Site Development late last week to extend and improve water supply to South Andros. The contract signing follows a seven month tender process that allowed all companies to bid on the work.
“This project will bring much needed service improvements to an area that has been calling for relief for decades,” said General Manager of WSC, Glen Laville. “We are very pleased to be able to get this work started as well as the other components of this loan program to improve quality of service for our family islands.”
The project is part of the recently approved $41 Million program partially funded by $28 million loan from the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB) and the Government of The Bahamas. The overall program covers over 100 miles of water mains and more than 3,000 service connections, andwill also include water improvements to the islands of Cat Island, Crooked Island, Eleuthera, Long Island, San Salvador and some New Providence areas.
The South Andros contract will allow for the installation of over 20 miles of water mains and six hundred service connections impacting all communities from Congo Town to Mars Bay. Water supply will be provided by a desalination plant under a separate contract to be tendered prior to completion of the water works. The South Andros works are expected to take approximately twenty-five months to complete with emphasis being placed on a high quality, climate-resilient installation.
Water and Sewerage Chairman, Mr. Leslie Miller said, “The Corporation is happy to have the funding available to award this contract and have the work completed. When completed, the residents of South Andros from Congo Town to Mars Bay will see a huge improvement in the quality of water.”
The Corporation has advised that over time, the public can expect to hear about more work being done by Water and Sewerage. As works are nearing completion in New Providence, an award is anticipated shortly for work to commence on San Salvador. Additionally, a contract for Engineering Services will be awarded before the end of November 2016 to provide construction supervision and other related technical services under the CDB loan program.
Fulfilling its IDB Support Program to improve the quality of water and service to customers.
Nassau, Bahamas – The Water and Sewerage Corporation (WSC) signed a contract with Island Site Development today totaling $2.4 Million to rehabilitate critical wastewater infrastructure in New Providence. The contract signing follows a tender process that started in June 2016.
The contract is a funded by the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) under a loan agreement signed on December 16, 2011, for the implementation of the WSC Support Program – New Providence Water Supply and Sanitations Systems Upgrade.
Component 3 of the WSC Support Program, focused on the preparation of a Wastewater Master Plan. The plan will address; wastewater collection, treatment, and disposal needs of New Providence as well as the rehabilitation of critical sewerage infrastructure on the island.
A Master Plan was completed in October 2015, designed to determine the best way to address these issues. The WSC is using this Master Plan to determine which wastewater assets it will rehabilitate and construct, with the funds from the IDB, to improve the overall working system.
The WSC is using a phased approach to carry out these works and each of these contracts is being procured separately, in three separate contracts:
1. (Small Works) Rehabilitation of Small Pumping Stations and Related Works
2. (Major Works) Construction of Wastewater Treatment Plants & Pumping Stations.
3. (Engineering Consultant) Construction Supervision of both the Major and Small Construction Works.
Using the IDB’s international tendering procedures for National Competitive Bidding (NCB), Island Site Development (ISD) was awarded the Small Works contract once the bids were evaluated and they were determined to be the lowest evaluated bidder.
According to Mr. Glen Laville, General Manager of the Water and Sewerage Corporation, “Several of our wastewater facilities have required rehabilitation for many years. It’s definitely a relief to have the funding available to address some of the more critical components.”
Expecting to take 6 months, the works consists of rehabilitating 10 sewage pumping stations, and installation of 1000 ft. of gravity collection mains along with other associated works.
WSC is also in the process of requesting proposals and accepting tender bids for the second contract listed. Proposals for these major works are due at the end of November and a firm will be selected by January 2017. These works are expected to last 18 months, bid information is on the company website.
The WSC will also finalize the selection of a Consultant Firm (third contract listed) to assist with construction supervision for both wastewater contracts mentioned above. The firm selected will ensure the quality and timeliness of the construction works.