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This paper discusses the water and wastewater problems of the colonias along the Texas-Mexico border and how the utilization of self-help and nonconventional methods contribute to addressing these needs. As state and federal funds allocated to address water and wastewater infrastructure needs in the colonias are depleted quickly, the Texas Small Towns Environment Program (Texas STEP), which relies on the concept of self-help, becomes one of the most viable options available to the remaining colonias without adequate environmental infrastructure. The program assists small communities that want to use local volunteers, materials, and financial resources to alleviate their infrastruture crisis.
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