A Granddaughter’s Grueling Task
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San Juan Copan, Honduras
From an early age, Yosseline has been raised by her grandmother. The two are very close. They enjoy shelling corn together and doing other tasks.
More recently however, collecting water together for drinking and cooking has been a big challenge. Because of her age, grandma can no longer fetch water with her granddaughter.
“For me, it is difficult to go down the mountain,” Grandma Maria told us. "It’s even harder to carry the water back up. I am afraid I might fall and break something. Then who would take care of my granddaughter?”
So eight-year-old Yosseline walks by herself down the mountain, and then back up again 3 times a day to fetch the water they need.
Each trip takes up to 45 minutes and the most she can carry is two gallons at a time.
Their primary water source is a small, square concrete cistern which collects dirty water that runs off the hillside.
“Sometimes the water is very muddy and has dirt in it. It’s gross. It always has worms,” she said wrinkling her nose.
189 households use this cistern and other dangerous water sources around the community.
One afternoon Yosseline said she got sick from drinking the contaminated water.
“I told grandma I will not go to get water from that place again!" declared Yosseline. Sadly, they had no other choice but to go back and get water from that source.
When Operation Blessing learned about the community, we tested the water and confirmed that it is bacteria filled and dangerous. So we started a clean water project there.
First, we identified a new water source. With help from residents, we dug a two mile/3.42 km trench and laid PVC pipe.
“I was happy when I heard the news that there would be water,” said Yosseline with a smile. “I said, ‘Thank God for such a wonderful day!”
Next Operation Blessing repaired the community’s 15-thousand-gallon holding tank that was damaged and unusable.
We also added chlorination to purify the water. Finally, we ran pipes to Yossline’s house and to every other home in the small community.
“When I saw the water I was very excited. I was really happy because I knew that now I was going to drink clean water,” said a smiling Yosseline.
“Water is so precious,” added Grandma. “I thank the engineers from Operation Blessing and also the donors. God bless you!”
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