HONDURAS – When Antoni’s stomach started to burn, he knew something was wrong. Only moments after he drank a little water, waves of nausea and pain struck him. He grew so sick his family had to rush him to the only clinic available—more than an hour’s drive from their home.
The worst part was, the emergency visit cost nearly half of Antoni’s father’s wages for an entire month. Antoni survived, but he wasn’t unharmed. His father said, “The doctor told me that Antoni had developed parasites because of the type of water that he has been drinking.”
And there was no guarantee this wouldn’t happen again, because Antoni’s family didn’t have another source of clean water in Honduras. You see, little 9-year-old Antoni lives with his family in a remote mountain village in Honduras where water access had always been scarce, and what they could find wasn’t safe. His father explained, “The water we have consumed has never been clean. The hoses don’t have any filters. We see insects and dirt in the cloudy water.” He and others in his village knew this was a problem, but they didn’t have the means to solve it on their own.
So somehow, they kept on going, even though they had to continue using the same contaminated water for drinking, cooking, and washing. Antoni shared one particularly frightening moment: “One day we went with my dad to check the spring where the hoses come from. When we arrived, there was a dead animal in it. We removed it with some sticks. It really smelled bad. Dad said we had to wait for a while before we drank the water.” On days like that one, it was hard for Antoni’s family to hope circumstances would improve.
Operation Blessing Helps Provide A Source Of Clean Water In Honduras
Then they met Operation Blessing, and friends like you changed everything! Young Antoni said, “When Operation Blessing came, I felt relieved, because they were going to fix this water problem.” The clean water team immediately set to work evaluating the problem and potential solutions with the help of the locals.
First, they identified a new freshwater spring higher in the mountains for a spring water catchment system that would replace the dirty, exposed pools the community had been using. Then, together with community members, the team laid a pipe system, built a 5,000-gallon storage tank, and added purification. Water ran free and clean for the first time—right to residents’ homes.
Antoni was ecstatic. “The water that Operation Blessing gave us is very refreshing. There is a strong stream of water right in the house faucets! It feels as cold as if they had put ice in it,” he exclaimed. “Now my family and everyone in the community are happy because of the water that God sent us. Now everyone who drinks this water will not suffer!”
His father’s words perhaps express it best. “First of all, I want to thank God, and then thank the donors of the Operation Blessing project. For us this has been excellent; it is a blessing for this community and for each family. Thank you!”