Rose’s Biggest Problem

#EndTheWalk for dirty water at the Landja Mboko elementary school

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We’d like to introduce you to Rose.  She lives with her mother Hulga and older sister Letitia, in a small mud-block house just 30 yards from her elementary school in the Landja Mboko neighborhood. And even though they’re on the eastern outskirts of the capital city of Bangui, their neighborhood has a problem. As their neighbor John says, “Even if we never get electricity here, if we could just get good water to drink, we’d be fine. That’s the BIGGEST problem we face.”

The BIGGEST Problem from Water for Good on Vimeo.

 

John is especially concerned about this problem since he lives next to the school, and watches each day as Rose and hundreds of her classmates struggle to get water to drink. The options are limited. A few children have a good water source at home, and bring water bottles with them. Some stop in at John’s house next door to the school during recess to ask for a drink.

2upOne of the 4 classrooms at the Landja Mboko school / Rose’s neighbor John shares his view on the water crisis the school is facing

But John has to haul his own water by hand, and doesn’t have enough for all the students. Some walk down the road a quarter mile to the municipal tap-stand, and hope someone will share some water with them, since the 3hr-long wait in line to purchase water isn’t an option for a student during a quick 15 minute recess. But on many days, the tap-stand is dry due to a poorly maintained and over burdened municipal water system. That leaves one final option for Rose and her friends—a muddy seep hole a few hundred yards up the hill from the school that only has water during the rainy season. Unfortunately, John says, this is sometimes the only option.

“The water they find to drink around here isn’t good. It’s not treated, it’s dirty. People soak their manioc in it, but the children are obliged to drink from it because they’re thirsty.”

In the dry season, when the seep hole dries up, it’s a long and difficult mile and a quarter walk to the muddy Ubangi river for a drink.

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Rose and a classmate, a young boy named Peniel, scoop water from the seep hole near their school.

Unfortunately, this isn’t a unique case. With a population of over four million, there are hundreds of schools across the Central African Republic, many, if not most of them, without a close source of clean water for the students. The school at Landja Mboko is just one school in a sea of schools that desperately needs a clean water source.

This year, Water for Good is partnering with UNICEF to make a small dent in the problem by putting in a dozen new wells at schools across the country. In fact, we’ve already started, with several wells already completed this month! These new wells are a part of our new Co-Fund campaign, where donors like you have come alongside our major partners (like UNICEF) to make these wells a reality! You can make this partnership possible by starting a Co-Fund campaign where your friends/family/co-workers can work together to cover Water for Good’s portion of the expenses. Want to join in? We’ve still got wells waiting to be sponsored!

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Even if you’re not interested in funding an entire well, would you consider giving a donation, to help us #endthewalk to the dirty water source for students like Rose? Clean water allows them to focus on what’s more important—just being a normal kid in school, instead of worrying about where they’ll get their next drink of water! It only takes $5 to provide a year of clean water to a student in the Central African Republic!

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