MEXICO – When 8-year-old Claudia was still a very small child, she would cry when she had to gather water with her family. Helping her parents carry water from the cisterns a half- mile away had been a chore for Claudia since she was just 5 years old—old enough to carry a quart. During the dry seasons, she took the long, dangerous journey two or three times every day. She often slipped and fell on the slick, steep path.
Sometimes, she even had to crawl up the hill. “It was a lot of weight on my body,” Claudia said. “My shoulders hurt a lot.” Her water often spilled out of the bottle she carried. Once, the bottle even broke! She did her best to plug the holes and carry the little water she had left back home.
Her parents understood that getting clean water in Chiapas was hard on Claudia, but the family had no choice. “Water is very important,” said her mother, Deyra. “It is for many things: to wash clothes, dishes, bathe, cook food … everything. Without water, we can do nothing.”’
The Need For Clean Water In Chiapas, Mexico
Access to clean water in Chiapas, Mexico had been a long-term problem for the families living in the remote community of El Mirado. Their only source was the cisterns that stored untreated water that frequently made the residents, especially children like Claudia, very sick. “I often had stomach aches and my little brother did too,” she told us. “We thought it was the water, but we didn’t know another way.”
Thankfully, friends like you had a solution. Our generous donors supplied a rainwater catchment system that would offer filtered water for the entire community.
In addition to the new water system, they also provided ecological dry toilets for every household, so residents would no longer have to use the fields behind their homes. Better sanitation would prevent the spread of disease, and so many had their health and dignity restored by the kindness of others.
Claudia was excited. She would no longer have to risk slipping and falling just to
get water for her family. “Just like that, we can drink water!” she said. “And I haven’t been sick from my tummy!”
Her mother is relieved to have clean water in Chiapas. “Now we have safe water right at home. My youngest son never has to know what it is like to carry water.”