by Gerhard Hope
The lack of plumbing infrastructure and a trained, certified workforce has long plagued the citizens of India, for whom 7.5% of deaths each year can be attributed directly to water and sanitation issues, reports the World Plumbing Council (WPC).
In response, WPC member organizations IAPMO and the Indian Plumbing Association (IPA) and its training arm, the Indian Institute of Plumbing (IIP), are working together to help the nation make big strides forward in both areas of need.
Having already jointly developed the Uniform Plumbing code – India, an extensive code of plumbing practice that will serve the people of India for years to come, the organizations subsequently turned their focus to education and training.
The ambitious Plumbing Education to Employment Programme (PEEP) will offer structured courses of study to develop plumbing design engineers, plumbing construction managers/supervisors and plumbing installers/repairers.
No architecture or engineering course of study in India currently offers a diploma or degree in plumbing. An overwhelming percentage of the nation’s plumbers are “casual laborers” who have learned the trade through personal experience or working with experienced plumbers, according to Sudhakaran Nair, IPA president and executive board member of the WPC.
PEEP will be implemented in partnership with existing colleges, polytechnics and industrial training institutes in India. The programme was scheduled to launch in May. In the lead up, expert trainers from IAPMO conducted “Train the Trainer” programmes to educate faculty members at the institutions participating in PEEP.