Despite the energy in her voice, the lines on Faith’s face and clouded eyes behind her glasses betray her age. At 85, she is living what they call the “bonus years” in Uganda, meaning she is alive to see her great grandchildren. But nothing – least of all her age – is stopping Faith from securing a better future for her family, starting with water.
“I like talking about water, because water is life,” Faith says, as she sits in the shade of an avocado tree next to the home she shares with two daughters and three grandchildren.
When she was a young girl, Faith says it was her responsibility to fetch water for her family – but it was from unprotected sources like nearby streams.
“We would at times fall sick,” says Faith. “And whenever there were prolonged periods of drought, we would be fatigued from walking long distances.”
Faith was able to install a household water connection as part of a piped water scheme in Kamwenge District, Uganda. Having this household tap has reduced the family’s fear of water-borne diseases and allowed them more time and resources to devote to their small poultry business. In the future they hope to grow a banana plantation, because with their new, reliable water access they would be able to water during the dry season, allowing them to grow year-round.
Faith’s daughter-in-law Monica says the water connection they installed has improved her life immensely. Before, she would have to walk for 30 minutes every morning to fetch water from a pond. This would cause her children to be late for school, and she lost hours in her day when she could be working. “Now, I am satisfied knowing that we have clean water and I am not exposing my family to diseases,” Monica says.
“The tap excites the children so much that whenever I need water, they compete to fetch it for me,” Monica says. “Having this water is a blessing.”