Lesson Learned: Don’t Take Water for Granted!

CWS Indonesia | August 26, 2019

Diana fills a bucket with water from a recently constructed borehole. Photo: CWS

Like many people in the world, Diana used to take water for granted. Now, after the complex natural disaster changed her life last year, she understands how valuable and rare safe water can be. Diana lived in a coastal village near Palu in Central Sulawesi. But when an earthquake and resulting tsunami washed her home away on September 30th she had to move along with thousands of others to temporary encampments. In her camp, called Lumbuna, there was no central water system. This made safe drinking water a rarity, and it made cooking, bathing and washing clothes difficult. And, for the first time in her life, Diana realized the privilege she had in having had ample water just days before.

Thankfully, Diana now recalls, CWS began trucking safe water to Lumbuna within days of the mass movements. And, very soon, each person was receiving at least 15 liters (four gallons) of water every day. In time, the ration approached eight gallons per person each day. Still, this was for drinking (after boiling) as well as cooking, bathing and doing laundry.

Ten months after the disaster, CWS is still committed to providing clean water for Diana and thousands of other people still displaced from their homes. As our response moves into recovery, CWS teams are drilling boreholes to find more water, which Diana and others more immediate and sustainable access to water. Now she can spend less time worrying, and start moving forward with her life. “I am really stressed about starting my life over after the earthquake. But with CWS’s help in sharing clean water, I have one less obstacle and I can start focusing on getting my life back on track”.

CWS, along with community members, is now drilling multiple borehole to increase water access for ≈1,000 families still coping with the earthquake and tsunami’s impact. Much remains to be done. But, as Diana said, there’s one less thing families need to worry about for now.

For more information contact mkoeniger@cwsglobal.org

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