Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Next Time You Turn on the Shower...

Remember, not everyone in the world can.

For most of us when we turn on our sink faucets to wash dishes or start filling up our bath tub to relax after a long day we rarely, if all, think about what it would be like to not have this luxury. We rarely are faced with a “hard” time; maybe the city shuts of the pipes for a few hours or a winter storm freezes the pipes, but after a short time everything is restored. It’s hard to think that so many people around the world do not have this luxury in their homes and now after living an entire lifetime without much thought, we are know among those living without a water source in their home. 

We are lucky. We may not have water running directly into our home, but we do have water catchment tanks within a one minute walk. There is even a pipe that runs from the city just outside of our compound. For the majority of people in our town and throughout the country, this is not the case.

Throughout the day you will see children moving back and forth from town; in the evenings numbers grow as crowds of children and women migrate towards the edge of town, each of them caring a jerry can or two, the younger ones (toddlers) with 1 liter coke bottles. They make this 1-2 mile roundtrip trek every day, usually 3 times, to collect water from the bore hole. In total our town has 2 water sources, one on either side of the town and this water is the life source of the community.  The other day we decided to follow the children on their journey with jerry cans in tow.

 From the hillside we started our journey, walking down the dirt path through the brush. Once we came to the road side we made our way down the hill merging onto the main road. The water sources from a deep valley at the edge of town. In order to reach it, we had to exit the road and climb down a large hill side; slowly we made our way down a narrow path. At the bottom of the hill next to our famous large rocks sits one bore hole. One child starts to pump as others lines up the cans. Others wait their turn and chat about their day. They do this for about 20 minutes until all the cans are full and they start their journey back home. It is amazing the strength these children have. Carrying 10 and 20 liter jerry cans requires strength, one we could barely manage. Yet they walk with ease back to their homes ready to return for their second trip with the cans placed atop their heads.

One of the town bore holes

two children walking up hill from bore hole

child carrying full jerry can on head

child using bike to transport two 20 liter jerry cans

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