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Drinking Water the Color of Coffee

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For generations Maria, and now her children have been forced to carry buckets of water more than one hour each way from a polluted river. “The water was the color of coffee. It was cloudy and smelled nasty,” said Maria. But it's the only source we had so that’s what we drank.” 

Maria’s 11-year-old daughter, Elena, told us what she saw in the water. “The water got black when the cows tramped in it. The water smelled like cow dung. Drinking it made me sick.” 

And because it’s always been the girls’ job to carry water, they often missed school. That’s led to increased illiteracy among the women in the community. Then Operation Blessing came to the community and set up the rainwater harvesting system. When it rains, water is collected from the roof into gutters. It then travels to this tank where it is treated with chlorine. This water is used for drinking, cooking, and washing dishes.  

“The girls said, ‘Mom, look at how much water we have! Before we could only carry a little. Now we have so much water! And it’s so clean,’” recalled a joyful Maria.

The rainy season lasts ten months here in this community outside Chiapas, Mexico, so there is water almost all year long. When it is drier families have been taught by Operation Blessing how to conserve and make the water last!

“Clean water means good health for all of us!” said Maria. “Now I don’t miss school because I have to collect water,” added Elena. “I want to tell everyone from Operation Blessing thank you for this clean water. May God bless you!”

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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.