Numerous tragedies occurred during this year 2020, led by the deadly COVID-19 pandemic. It affected not just the health of people, but more importantly the way we live, communicate, and transact with one another. The Santa Maria Water District (SMWD) was not exempted.

But as the saying goes, “Tough times don’t last. Tough people do.”

As fire purifies gold and pressure creates diamonds, so the COVID-19 pandemic has tested SMWD’s resiliency and preparedness to face any catastrophe.

And for its 34th Anniversary last September 23, the SMWD did not have any celebration. No party, no dance numbers, no anniversary mass.

This year, only one thing was made sure: SMWD is ready for the New Normal.

Although SMWD’s annual events such as the bowling tournament, the Water Saver Educational Program, and the anniversary celebration were all cancelled due to pandemic, the employees were never deprived of safety inside the office.

Acrylic barriers were set up in every working station to ensure optimum physical distancing amongst co-workers and concessionaires. In addition, working arrangements were also implemented to limit the number of employees reporting per day to avoid overcrowding in the office.

In terms of disinfection and cleaning, two lavatories were set up near the entrance of both the HQ and Farmacia offices so that everyone who enters the premises will have to wash their hands first. Frequent disinfection of both offices and all SMWD service vehicles were also conducted by the General Services Division.

The SMWD also teamed up with the local health unit to conduct an information drive to educate employees on the do’s and dont’s in dealing with COVID-19.

Most importantly, the SMWD unswervingly provided its concessionaires with quality service amidst the threat of the pandemic, risking their lives for the sake of bringing clean water to every household in its scope.

Overall, the hard work each employee gave during this trying season is a testament that SMWD did not just survive the past 34 years – it thrived. And it will continue to thrive for more years to come.