I thought I’d share some stories about Ethiopia, and water, on World Water Day 2012.
See these gorgeous guys? When we met them at FOVC in November, FOVC’s water project had been started, but not completed (they were waiting for a part for the pump to arrive). In the meantime, these sweet boys and the dozens of other children at FOVC were given water as it was made available. As you can see from the bottle, this water was filthy, but all that they had to drink/use for washing/use for cooking.
A hand-washing station was available at FOVC, just outside the new bathroom facilities EOR built last year. A 3 gallon plastic container hung from a rail over a shallow basin, allowing multiple children the opportunity to wash. Heated in the bright sunshine, the water swirled through the jug, brown and full of sediment. EOR’s travel team chose not to use this water to wash, despite strong suggestions from the children. Spying the clear bottles of thick sanitizer we used instead, they yelled, “ferenge water, ferenge water.” The children believe that I live in a world where my water is clean, and in this case, thick.
On the very first day we were in Ethiopia, the EOR travel team visited the water project we helped to fund in Busa. Few sights moved me more than the reservoir and the beautifully-constructed 4 pt tap,
although the pride etched on each resident’s face comes awfully close. Appreciative as they were to have the funding for this project, the village elders were obviously proud of what they had secured for themselves and their children. This clean water means more girls go to school, fewer people die of water-borne disease, and that women have the ability to earn more for their families now that they spend fewer hours collecting water. Seeing the benefits first-hand left an indelible mark. I will trumpet the need for clean water (in Ethiopia and the rest of the world) for the remainder of my days.
As Ethiopian Orphan Relief reaches its 4th anniversary, it’s exciting to share that we have big plans for the coming year–among other things, land acquisition, a kitchen project, chicken coops, and yes, a continued commitment to clean water. On this 19th World Water Day, EOR recognizes that clean water is everything to the people of Ethiopia. Indeed, it is everything to the world.
I’ll be making a special contribution to EOR’s water funding this week. I’ll make an additional $1.19 contribution for each comment and each share. Together, we can make clean water a reality for more Ethiopians.
YOU are clean water for Ethiopia. YOU are EOR!