Road to Fetch Water

Water is the source of life. Seventy kilometres away from the county seat, there is a small village, here drought prevails year by year with little rainfall, and when summer comes, the precipitation is less and the cellar water collected by households in rainy days is far from enough for people’s daily drinking, and it is extremely difficult for people and livestock to get drinking water. In addition to climate abnormalities, deep gullies and big mountains made the groundwater extraction is very difficult here. In the village, people have a hard daily task – fetching water.

Wenwen is a student from Grade 6 in primary school. Whenever the school is off, he will immediately take the bucket to go to the place with water. After about 40 minutes of walking, he arrives at the water source, scoops up the earthy water (water seeped out at the foot of the mountain), and when the bucket is full, he scoops out the sheep droppings and firewood powders floating at the surface. He said, “The water is for people’s drinking including the younger baby.” The seeped water is almost running out, he walks back with the bucket on the narrow winding path. The bucket is too heavy for this skinny boy and he has to stop several times on his way home. If things are going well, he will bring the water home safely, but sometimes, he might have a bad fall, then it is really bad.  

Finally, he arrives at home with a relief. It takes him nearly 2 hours. Let us think about, a little boy has to carry water as same weight as his own, how terrible thing it is!  However, this is the strength to survive, extremely powerful.

In April this year, the local government launched the south central region urban and rural safe drinking water program. The South-North Water Diversion Project has solved the water mains to remote mountainous areas; however, the pipes to households still need a big amount of money. Upon the request of the village committee, World Vision provided financial aid for them and solved their practical difficulties finally, which brought them convenience to get clean and safe drinking water.

When we came to Wenwen’s home again, he was pleased to pick up a bucket and walk to the water tap to get water. While he was fetching water with the bucket, he said to me, “Many thanks. Now, I no longer need to walk far to fetch water, I don’t need to worry bad falls on my way to fetch water anymore, I don’t have to drink earthy water mixed with sheep droppings and firewood powders, and I will never worry about  I would not come home when it is dark……”

(Written by Ma Weinan, Hai Qin)