In response to the financial fallouts and hardships being experienced by many Jamaicans during this pandemic, Miya Jamaica has stepped in to provide relief supplies to families across the Island. The Company has also been working closely with the National Water Commission (NWC) to strengthen the operational efficiency of the Kingston and St. Andrew (KSA) Non-Revenue Water (NRW) Reduction Programme, to reduce water losses and ensure a steady flow of water to NWC customers.
Country Manager for Miya Jamaica, Alvaro Ramalho said:
"We are still very active and making every effort to prioritize the safety of the co-management staff (NWC and Miya) plus multiple subcontractors in our daily activities,” he said, "Under the NRW Reduction Co-management Programme, both NWC and Miya have been agile in designing a matrix of essential and non-essential NRW Activities. This enables management to strategically deploy all workers (the "WATER HEROES”) in a safe manner, avoiding any contamination risk for the general public and securing the crucial sustainability of the water network.”
With this approach, the co-management team is able to monitor the mandatory essential activities and the level of contamination risk associated with each one; reducing to a minimum the risk and adapting quickly to sudden changes in these uncertain times.
The matrix provides an overview of major ongoing NRW activities, namely: Pressure Management, Leak Repairs, Leak Detection, Metering in Socially Challenging Areas (SCA) and Procurement. Additionally, a re-evaluation of the COVID-19 activities prevented the NRW programme from further delays and subcontractors from greater economic stress at this pandemic stage. As a result, activities such as Pipe Laying, Meter Installation in SCA’s and Technical Support are ongoing currently.
According to Mr Ramalho:
"The NWC and Miya will consistently re-evaluate these plans parallel to the changes of the COVID-19 landscape, to ensure that service to customers is not interrupted and workers are kept safe, as best as possible.”
For example, Miya recently improved protocols and put a schedule in place at its Marescaux offices, to ensure that all departments work together to maintain the least number of employees needed in office at any time. All NWC-Miya workers are provided with effective PPE gears (masks, gloves, hand sanitizers) to minimize the risk of contamination. Moreover, all fieldworks are guided by a minimum to no contact protocol when interacting with customers and are in compliance with the national COVID-19 health, safety and curfew guidelines.
Additionally, Miya Jamaica has also gone the extra mile to secure other non-water needs for residents in several affected communities across Jamaica; delivering hygiene supplies, food and liquids, among other essential resources to give further relief to homes needing the support.
In light of these stringent approaches and the risks involved with keeping the NRW Programme operational, Miya Jamaica and the NWC thanks all employees for their stark efforts on the worksites and for their support in rolling out the Miya COVID-19 relief initiative to the different communities.