Wine to Water, Dominican Republic: Water Filter Project

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Wine to Water Dominican Republic Water Filter Project, Photos by Sherrie Thai of

I was very happy and humbled to have had the opportunity to participate in the WINE TO WATER project in the Dominican Republic to help create water filters for the local community (on the 22nd Fathom Impact Trip). Wine to Water is a non-profit organization focused on providing clean water to people around the world. Headquartered in North Carolina, the organization has locations in Africa, Haiti, Dominican Republic, Cambodia, Amazon and Nepal. They utilize local materials: Sawdust, Clay, Charcoal and ship in Liquid Silver to act as a filtration for the rainwater, contaminated local streams, and rivers.

You can find the complete documentary photos HERE (all photos from this series are available for free download from Smugmug)

In the Dominican Republic, nearly 1/3 of the population do not have clean water available. The average income per household is $150 a month, and many times, bottled water needs to be purchased at $1 each. With an average family of five, funds are tight and many diseases arise from contaminated water. I found out about Wine to Water’s amazing project and wanted to help. Here are a few of the wonderful volunteers and workers at the Wine to Water factory in the D.R:

Wine to Water Dominican Republic Water Filter Project, Volunteers, Photos by Sherrie Thai of

The factory is simple but effective. The production of the water filters takes place in 3 main parts: Sifting and mixing the sawdust and clay together to form clay (analog style, dusty hard work!), Shaping the filters by hand and machine, and Firing the dried filters in the kiln. With my group, we helped to create 28 water filters, amounting to about a 100 people helped. Yay!

Wine to Water Dominican Republic Water Filter Project, Factory, Photos by Sherrie Thai of

Producing water filters is an arduous but fulfilling task. The physical work humbles you and makes you grateful for the fact that living in a first world country, you don’t have to worry about the source of the water, if it would make you sick when you drink it, how you will get the water, where would you go to find it, or how much of it you could afford. However, I’m glad to have found a great organization like Wine to Water that helps communities in need and works with them to ensure that the filters work properly.

Wine to Water Dominican Republic Water Filter Project, Production Process, Photos by Sherrie Thai of

After placing the clay filters on racks to be dried, we took another batch of completed filters to a small village in the DR. We met with the community leaders and local families at the community center to distribute the water filters. There was a nearby creek which unfortunately, was polluted with trash (bottom photo)–a reminder of how necessary these water filters are. Through Entrena and Fathom Facilitators, Frank and Francisco, the families were educated on how to care for and utilize the clay filters. The families contribute small funds to help pay for the filters; WtoW found that in general, people became more personally invested in the filters and cared for them better.

With my limited Spanish, I was only able to introduce myself to the families and mumbled where I was from, but the handshake and smiles were met with warm and grateful faces, where words weren’t necessary; it was a very heartfelt and beautiful moment I was pleased to be a part of.

If you’d like to help out, you can visit the WINE TO WATER site to donate or volunteer 🙂

DOCUMENTARY PHOTO ALBUM if interested. Thanks for reading–Cheers!

Wine to Water Dominican Republic Water Filter Project, Community, Photos by Sherrie Thai of

Artwork: Evil & Good Mermaids

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evil & good mermaids art by Sherrie Thai of

“Evil & Good Mermaids” celebrates the magical realm of the supernatural and the dangerous lure of temptation. The original illustration was created from pen/ink and I combined the background with Photoshop and added digital coloring.

Here’s the perfect gift for anyone who appreciates the exquisite Sirens of the Sea: ART PRINTS

evil & good mermaids skirt art by Sherrie Thai of

A hot mini-skirt product is available on my REDBUBBLE Shop.

evil & good mermaids art by Sherrie Thai of

A Tshirt Design is AVAILABLE HERE at my Zazzle Shop.

Travel Photos: New Orleans Halloween

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NOLA French Quarter Travel Photography
French Quarter

NOLA Honey Swamp Bayou
Honey Island Swamp

NOLA Bloodlust Vampire Ball
Bloodlust Vampire Ball

I have always been fascinated by New Orleans and had to travel there for Halloween, to experience the wonderful revelry and explore the dark crevices of the French Quarter and beyond. The people, food, art and stories were inspiring as there is so much soul and energy out there–definitely going back!

Here is my photo album on SMUGMUG

Vanitas Veins, Gothic Surrealism Art by Sherrie Thai of Shaireproductions

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vanitas veins, dark horror art by Sherrie Thai of

“Vanitas Veins” is a mixed media piece of a mysterious angelic creature, drawing breath from the bloody veins of life, perfect for the Halloween holiday. The illustration speaks to the mysteriousness of life. The blood veins reach outwards like wings, similar to how magic can call upon us in the quiet moments of the dawn 🙂

You can add this piece to your art collection HERE at my Etsy Shop.

Artwork: Bird Skull Mandala

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bird skull mandala, dark horror art by Sherrie Thai of

“Bird Skull Mandala” is inspired by the beauty of the macabre, with a detailed winged pattern drawn meticulously with pen/ink. I love creating a piece that combines the simple elegance of nature with the dark side of life. For a small price, you can indulge in this stunning piece and add this print to your collection or as a small gift for your friends or family: HERE on Etsy

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