By Zahra Huber

DETROIT (CBS DETROIT) – Four hundred people who live in a volcanic crater in Laguna de Apoyo, Nicaragua are surrounded by a beautiful lake, but lack clean water. It’s contaminated with arsenic and bacteria.

That’s why members of Engineers Without Borders in Detroit are holding an event Friday evening to raise funds for two projects:

“One is to drill a well on the outside of the crater, to drill into a clean aquifer that avoids the arsenic and bacterial contamination. Then we’ll pipe that water down into the community,” said Brad Galo with Engineers Without Borders, Detroit Chapter.

That project would bring clean water to the villagers. Galo said they would then install a sanitation system.

“We still need to work out the details of the implementation for that. It will probably involve something to the effect of a combination of septic tanks and other solutions for the sanitation piece,” Galo told WWJ’s Zahra Huber.

The projects mean a lot to Galo.

“Growing up my whole life in the Midwest, water falls out of the sky and we get mad at it. There are people around the world, more than two-and-a-half times the U.S. population, who don’t have access to a reliable source of clean water. To me it was so stunning that this basic resource that people need to live is not as accessible as I once thought it was for everyone,” said Galo.

A black-tie gala is being held at the Detroit Yacht Club Friday, June 12. The event features a 20-piece jazz band, a three-course dinner, cocktails, and a silent auction. You can purchase tickets here.

Learn more about the projects here.

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