When Water Is a Luxury

CWS Indonesia | November 26, 2019

    Selvina watering her plants. Photo: CWS

    Having clean water, proper sanitation and good hygiene are essential to everyone’s health. In the United States, these things are generally taken for granted. But, access to safe water, proper sanitation and the chance to have good hygiene are difficult in much of the world, especially during an emergency.

    Selvina, a 50-year-old mother of four, is a testament to the importance of safe water. During a late 2018 emergency response led by CWS in Central Sulawesi, Indonesia, Selvina and her family had access to clean water from our water-trucking program. Early in 2019, as the transition from emergency water trucking to more sustainable clean water sourcing started, CWS worked with communities to drill boreholes to reach deep underground water reservoirs…and to test the water for safety before making it accessible to all.

    This past September, Selvina and her family were among 150 people able to get ample clean water from one such borehole. Now, Selvina notes, “I even have enough water for my plants”! In many people’s view, this may not be such a big thing. But, for a family that lost everything, including their house, the luxury of water for the garden is…just that – a luxury – though a small one.

    After more than a year of rationing water to drink and cook, and bathe occasionally, CWS staff are happy for Selvina’s small luxury, which means a lot to her wellbeing and resilience as a mother and homemaker.

    (For more information please contact mkoeniger@cwsglobal.org )

    Water tanks near the borehole that is helping Central Sulawesi families regroup after last year’s earthquake. Photo: CWS

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