Fugro’s geophysical survey in the waters of one of the world’s largest lakes has had a seismic impact on children at a nearby orphanage.
At the end of the 2D high-resolution data collection project on Lake Tanganyika in Africa, the Fugro team donated around 500 kilogrammes of food and beverages to the Sanganigwa Children’s home in Kigoma, Tanzania – a small port town on the eastern shore of the lake where the team was based.
Seeing the children’s faces when they received the large amount of different foods is an indelible memory for us all.
Silvio de Septis, Party Chief, Fugro Oceansismica, says living close to the local people during the three-month operation was a wonderful experience. He said: “We were based in Kigoma and getting to know the beauty of the lake and the friendliness of the local people was amazing.”
One of the main logistical issues was finding good quality food for the geophysics team and the crew of the seismic survey vessel, Mwongozo. Silvio explained: “Our shore manager had to travel by public bus for 12 hours to find food and beverages. Despite this, at the end of the project, we found we had a huge amount of supplies left on board.”
Silvio and his team learned that most of the children at Sanganigwa, an orphanage that hosts around 50 children and young people aged from three to 19, had lost their parents because of AIDS.
He said: “We decided that Sanganigwa was definitely the right place to donate our spare food. Seeing the children’s faces when they received that large amount of different kinds of foods is an indelible memory for us all.
“They soon organised a party to show their happiness and gratitude. The boys were playing drums and the girls were dancing in a circle around a tree. At the end of the party, we played football with the boys – it was a wonderful experience!”
For this seismic acquisition project Fugro converted a local ferry boat, the Mwongozo, into a seismic data acquisition vessel and used two other vessels, to explore and identify oil and natural gas prospects beneath Lake Tanganyika.
Lake Tanganyika straddles four countries – the Democratic Republic of Congo, Tanzania, Burundi and Zambia. It is the longest freshwater lake in the world and the second deepest (after Lake Baikal in Russia).
Silvio said: “When the Mwongozo vessel is demobilised, Fugro is planning a big, new donation to the orphanage that will include appliances, dishes and bedding – things that will make a real difference to the children of Sanganigwa.
“That’s what makes this job great!”
Lake Tanganyika is the longest freshwater lake in the world and the second deepest (after Lake Baikal in Russia), it has a max length of 673 km and max depth of 1,470 m.