The community of Létif is located in a small neighborhood in the commune of Capotille, in the northern region of Haiti called Ouanaminthe. The majority of people in this region do not have access to clean water. In fact, many people drink water from rivers where cattle also drink and bathe. There are many serious risks for the people who consume this water, including water-borne diseases and dangerous microbe consumption.
Lack of access to safe water has a particularly marked impact for women and girls, who are responsible for gathering the water each day. This reality forces some girls out of school and causes especially negative health consequences for women and infants. The majority of infant and child deaths in this community are linked to water pollution, poor hygiene, and inadequate sanitation. These conditions compromise not only the survival of children, but also their physical and mental development.
Haiti Outreach’s goal is to increase access to clean water, hygiene, and sanitation across the entire country of Haiti. As part of its strategy Haiti Outreach works with communities, NGOs and local water officials to help install and maintain better water supply systems.
To improve access to drinking water in the commune of Capotille, Haiti Outreach inaugurated a water well in Létif in 2020. The community had tried to find a sustainable solution on their own in the past, but had had trouble identifying a viable site to drill. “We tried several times, but every time we dug the ground, we only found contaminated water, so we abandoned our approach until a team from Haiti Outreach came to test the waters and help us,” says Emmanuel Adrien, well keeper and resident of the Letif community.
“We are proud, happy and very grateful to our benefactors. Everyone [ all over the world] has the right to an adequate supply of water that is accessible and affordable. “ says Emmanuel.
Liviose Victorin, Haiti Outreach field worker, explains: “Before the well was installed in Létif, many water-related problems affected this community, such as diarrhea for example. In addition, the women had to go far from the community to find water.” She finds that with the installation of the well, water chores take much less time, and the community has seen a marked decrease in the frequency of water-borne illnesses.