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Drinking Dirty, Dangerous Water

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Mayra is a widow who lives with her three children in a small village in the mountains of Honduras. Due to her limited income, she cannot afford to buy bottled water like some of their neighbors. Instead they have to drink dirty water from small open pools on the side of a mountain. The water is filled with bacteria. 

“The water is yellow. It has garbage in it and a lot of dirt,” said Mayra. “Sometimes the hose that brings the water gets blocked. Sometimes we find it was clogged with small snakes.”   

When the water stops running, Emanuel and his sister, Angely, go to check on the hose and clean it. Sometimes the water smells so bad that Emanuel says he won’t drink it. “I said, ‘Mom I am not going to drink that water even though I am thirsty.’ Mom told me to drink it. I said, ‘I don't want to get diarrhea.’” Emanuel told us he has been enduring stomach cramps and pain for years. “Sometimes the pain makes me cry. I can’t stand it.”   

“I remember those moments when my children suffered with that pain,” said Mayra. “It was as if the pain was killing them! I asked myself: ‘What am I going to do?’”  

One day while Emmanuel was playing with his friends, they stopped to drink some water. They refused to share their purified water with him. “I felt so bad,” said Emmanuel with tears filling his eyes. “I thought, ‘Why wouldn’t they share some water with me?’ “I said, ‘Lord, why is this happening to us?’” 

Then Operation Blessing came to his village to install a community wide water project. First, we found a new source for water higher up the mountain. Then with help from the people living there, we ran pipes to a 5000-gallon tank that we built near Emanuel’s home. We added chlorination to purify the water and added pipes to all the homes in the village. 

“The water is refreshing,” said Emanuel through the laughter in his voice. “It does not taste bad. It's not dirty. It's clean! Now even if I drink 5 glasses of water it does not give me a stomachache!” 

“I thank Operation Blessing and the people who donated to this project," said Mayra. “Thank you, God, because you touched their heart to give to help us. I will always be grateful for everything you did for us!”

“Thank you, Operation Blessing! We love you very much,” added Emanuel with the most beautiful smile.

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About The Author

Ken Hulme

CBN International Managing Director for The 700 Club | Ken's been telling stories as a producer and writer for nearly 40 years. Currently, he manages and mentors media teams based in countries worldwide that provide stories about the work of CBN, Operation Blessing, and Orphan’s Promise for The 700 Club and other media platforms. He is married with four adult children and nine grandchildren.