“There were so many things we didn’t have time for because of getting water, like making bread, going to the fields, and harvesting.”
Fatima has worked hard for 70 years, helping to take care of the 15 others that lived in her house. She was married at the young age of 14—the same year her mother passed. "I really regret that I lost my mother right before I was married. I didn’t have anybody to prepare me for my wedding."
As a wife, her day would start while the stars were still in the sky—collecting firewood and 10 jerry cans of water, each weighing about 40 pounds, to sustain her large family. "We didn't have time for anything when we had to walk for water," she tells us.
What is steps away for many of us, was miles away for Fatima.
“There were a lot of problems with my family getting water.
We used to get water from open ponds—sometimes it would be okay water, sometimes it would be dirty water.
We would get up early to walk far. We would ride donkeys or carry the water on our heads or tie it onto the donkeys.”
“When I was a child, I worked very hard. I helped serve the adults, children, and animals.
There were about 15 people living in my house and I had to go to the garden and harvest the grains and boil them and grind them into flour and make bread and serve it to everybody.
I was married when I was 14, around the same time my mother died, so I didn’t have anybody to teach me. I had to figure things out on my own.
What I remember about my mother is her helping around the house, serving other people, going to the market, making food, pounding the grain into flour.
I don’t remember too much from my childhood; cleaning the house, making tea, I remember when I had my young children.”
“[Before having clean water,] I woke up early when the stars were still up and I said my prayers with my husband.
He went back to sleep and I would stay awake to start preparing things. I prepared tea and water, and when he woke up we’d have breakfast. Then I’d do other things throughout the day. One of the things I’d have to do is go out and look for firewood and bring it back to start the fire.
I also had to go get water after the wood. Our large family needs to get 10 jerry cans of water.”
Fatima’s village in Chad received access to clean water through one of our local partners in the Sahel. Thanks to the support of our donors, after 70 long years of her family carrying up to 10 jerry cans of water every day, Fatima is experiencing a new life of freedom, health, and time spent with her family.
neverthirst donors made it possible for Fatima to have clean water and changed her life.
“I’m happy when my children are around me and we have water to drink, that just makes me happy.”
Every donation impacts a life. This summer, we're looking to grow our monthly donors who are committed to supporting tangible life change - it’s a simple commitment that has ongoing rewards for those around the world.
When you give $40/month, you change one person’s life every month—that’s twelve people in a year who will no longer be carrying their burden alone.