I’ve been carrying a lot of buckets lately. Buckets of water. There is a water shortage in our area. I don’t really know or understand the logistics of it all but what I do know is that on most days there is no water coming out of my taps. Every 3 or 4 days the water is turned on for about 4 or 5 hours and then turned off again. In the much-anticipated “water on” time we do as much laundry as possible but our cistern is small and our family is big so we usually only have running water for 24 hours at a time. So for only two separate days in a week there is water in our house and rest of the days we use buckets. Thankfully we have access to a separate water supply on the property so on waterless days we go back and forth filling buckets full of water. I wish I could tell you that I am thankful that we have any water at all and that I can stay positive about it, but that would be a lie. The truth is that it drives me crazy!. We need buckets to wash dishes, flush toilets and take “showers”. More buckets to wash vegetables, small children and dirty floors. So back and forth we go every day, trying to be as carefull as possible to not waste it so that we don’t have to make extra trips back for more. It’s not fun. I want this to end. As I use all that precious time carrying those heavy buckets every day, I have time to think.
I think about water.
How wonderful it is.
How much we need it and how hard life becomes without it.
I’m blessed. I have a plan B, a place nearby to go get the water I need. Sure, it’s annoying and inconvenient, but it’s there.
I decided to do a little research about water as I know that most, if not all, third world countries have some water problems. Did you know that…
1 Billion people in our world do not have safe drinking water. charity:water
Globally, diarrhea is the leading cause of illness and death, and 88 per cent of diarrhea deaths are due to a lack of access to sanitation facilities. – UN water statistics
Today 2.5 billion people, including almost one billion children, live without even basic sanitation. – UN water statistics
Every 20 seconds, a child dies as a result of poor sanitation. That’s 1.5 million preventable deaths each year. – UN water statistics
Diarrhea diseases can be reduced by more than 40 percent through the simple practice of washing hands with soap and water. compassion
The average person in the developing world uses a little more than 2.5 gallons of water each day for drinking, washing and cooking. Whereas the average person in the developed world uses 13 gallons per day only for toilet flushing. compassion
Worldwide, approximately 425 million children under 18 do not have safe water. compassion
Aren’t those statistics crazy! The fact that most people in Northern America waste more water in flushing toilets than most kids use in their entire day makes me so sad and mad at the injustice of it all.
Some times the statistics just remain numbers and we forget about the people.
Meet my friends in the community of Las Aves. They have no running water in their community. A truck comes every once in a while (some times once a week but other times every 2 or 3 weeks) to fill barrels of water. The water is contaminated to begin with, and not suitable to drink. On top of that the water is left uncovered where children with filthy hands often play. The water is used for everything. Bathing, cleaning, washing clothes, and cooking. When is runs out they have to wait. Some times they go an entire week or more without taking a shower or washing dishes. These are real people. I have visited their homes. They are not just numbers, or a percentage.
Good news is that you can help!
I found a few organizations who are committed to help people in poverty get the water they need…
Compassion’s Water of Life system – safe water for life (over 1 million gallons) for a child and their family in developing countries. $79 to give a family clean water for life. Consider raising money as a family, so that your kids can be aware of the problem and can be part of the solution
Or sponsor a compassion child, where giving clean water is included with your sponsorship. Change the life of a child in poverty. It will change you too!
Or check out Charity:Water where they are committed to giving 100% of donations to give people in need clean water. Watch this video for more info, or consider giving your birthday to raise money or simply donate here.
So now that you know of this reality, will you do something to help those who live every day life carrying buckets of water?
I hope so.