- I used to wake up around 4 am to fetch water from the well/river. The source had low yield and served all the villagers, so it was first come, first served. If you awoke up late, you would subsequently be late to school as one had to wait up to 4 hours.
- Fetching water in a 20-liter container and carrying it more than two kilometers on my head was physically strenuous and tiring, leading to drowsiness at school and lack of concentration.
- I had to use this water sparingly in the house for many purposes, like cooking, drinking, body washing, house cleaning, laundry, etc., and that meant hygiene and cleanliness was compromised.
- The water was not totally clean and tasted salty and, at times, I used to get diarrhea from it and most people in the village as well.
- During the day while at school, cattle used to drink from the same source.
- Our village sources did not provude sufficient water and when we went to neighboring villages that had abundant water from the river, they used to stop us, saying that we have come to finish their water, and that used to cause tensions between the different village dwellers.
- Life is good and much easier and I look at these small girls with envy as they now can afford to wake up a littler later than we used to in the morning and still get to school on time.
- Keeping the house clean and healthy is now a breeze as there is enough water and hygiene has been improved generally.
- Even those villagers who used to ward us off from their sources now come to fetch water from our taps and we are now friends as there is no more competition for water.
- I now get different veggies from my neighbors as they also plant different veggies so that we can exchange and share.
- Generally in the village life is easier as there is more than enough water to use, cook and share during weddings, funerals, parties and those traditional gatherings.
More on Journey
- 2016 Sustainability Report: Letter from Chief Public Affairs, Communications and Sustainability Officer Bea Perez
Meet Jon Radtke:
- Infographic: 2016 Sustainability Report
- Our Progress: Human and Workplace Rights
Stories of Support: How
Coca-ColaScholars are Helping Their Communities, Post-Harvey