Globally, over 844 million people lack access to clean drinking water. Of this group, women of all ages are the most impacted by this reality. Most often the task of gathering water falls on the shoulders of women and girls who often travel long distances to collect it. Whatsmore, they cannot always gather enough water for their daily needs in one trip, so they can spend up to 6 hours each day just to acquire this basic necessity.
Their time spent collecting water prevents many women from participating in other activities that would enhance their quality of life as well, such as working, and for young girls from going to school or arriving at school on time.
That is the case for Djoulisca Joseph, a 12-year-old girl who lives in the “Ba Mache” neighborhood, in the commune of Pignon. She is the only daughter of merchant parents and is in her 7th year at the Collège de la Grâce in Pignon. In Haiti, every member of the family must help, including children. In this family, Djoulisca is responsible for fetching water. Every day she carries 6 yellow jerry cans filled with water for her family. Very often, this time-intensive task makes it hard for her to arrive at school on time.
Fortunately, in June of 2019, Haiti Outreach and the community of “Ba Mache” inaugurated their community well! Djoulisca has been overjoyed by the way this well has improved her quality of life and given her more time to focus on her studies. She shared, “Every day I walked for over an hour to get water, it took a while to get home because the gallons of water are very heavy. And I was regularly late for school because the place where I went to get water was very far away. I thank God for having put in the hearts of these people the desire to install a well in my community. Now I only have a short walk and can get to school on time!”
Thanks to the support of Haiti Outreach, the community leadership committee, and the local authorities who all came together, this community now has sustainable access to clean water. It’s not just the water that will improve the quality of life for these women, but other benefits as well.
Thanks to this new change, not only will they avoid getting sick from dirty water, but they will also have more time to earn a living to care for their families and send their children to school. They regain a certain dignity and hope for future generations of girls who will be able to flourish and build a better future for themselves and their communities.