His family’s future hardly ever crossed his mind. Pedro just prayed they would find enough water to get through today.
Water was in short supply in Pedro’s impoverished Nicaraguan community. An old (and frequently broken) water supply system could only provide water once or twice a week to him and his neighbors. And even when the old system did work, water only dribbled out for about an hour.
At this rate, there simply was not enough water to meet the basic needs of Pedro, his wife, and four children. “We could not wash clothes or dishes, and it was difficult for us to take showers,” Pedro recalls. “But the most felt difficulty was in drinking water.”
A Family’s Future on the Backburner
Amid such urgent needs, every day revolved around one thing: Bringing water home.
Pedro and his children would dedicate hours upon hours to this mission. They’d wake up early, trek long distances, and wait hours in line. Fetching water even interfered with other important tasks, like school and work, that would be essential to building this family’s future.
“Many times, I was late to school because I had to get up early to go to a neighbor’s house more than half a mile away to fetch water with a bucket,” Pedro’s 11-year-old son Brandon reports. “And that was almost every day. It was very hard for me.”
For the sake of his children, Pedro often bore the brunt of this enormous task alone. “Sometimes I had to carry water by myself all day for house chores, and I ended up very tired,” he shares.
“We are a family of scarce resources that lives from day to day, but at the same time we are a struggling family that wants to get ahead,” says Pedro.
Essentially, he found himself in a vicious cycle. His family needed water to achieve a brighter future, but their struggle to meet that need was also holding them back.
That changed when Food for the Hungry (FH) arrived in the community with the gift of water.
Hope Springs Up
Working hand-in-hand with Pedro and other community leaders, FH provided families a more consistent and efficient path to meet their water needs just steps from their front door.
First, FH replaced the broken-down existing water system with a new 10,000-liter tank. This dramatically increased the community’s water storage capacity, enabling Pedro’s family and their neighbors to not only get through the water shortage but prevent future shortages.
Second, together with FH, the community installed a submersible water pump in the nearby drilled well to speed the flow of water. As a result, Pedro and his family are able to quickly fill their buckets and move on to other important tasks.
Finally, with these needs met, Pedro and his children can focus on building their family’s future. They no longer miss school or spend entire days hauling water home instead of working. Now they can focus their valuable time and energy on breaking free from poverty for good.
A Family’s Future Transformed
“This has been an extremely important change,” Pedro says today. “My children do not have to suffer pulling water or limit themselves by doing chores that have to do with the consumption of water. Thanks to God, today we have water in our homes for a better quality of life.”
Not only do their lives look different today and tomorrow, but this family is able to dream about what life will look like decades and even generations from now.
“Our goals and dreams are to get ahead,” Pedro says. “And for my children to be able to study, get degrees, and get jobs that will allow them to live better than we have lived.”