In celebration of World Water Day, March 22, World Vision staff worldwide set out to photograph how water links to all areas of life. From super-soaked kids in Cambodia to clean hands in Bolivia to a new well in Afghanistan, view how World Vision’s programs in water, sanitation, and hygiene are helping provide a healthier future for children. To get involved, click here.
©2014 Chetra Ten/World Vision
OVERFLOWING IN CAMBODIA: Children in the village of Srey Pror Ser enjoy the benefits of clean water from a new well provided by World Vision. In rural Cambodia, children often lack access to clean water and proper sanitation facilities, leaving them highly susceptible to disease. These school children often used to play in dirty and contaminated bodies of water, but those days are behind them. World Vision is working with communities like Srey Pror Ser to improve sanitation and access to safe water supplies and promote improved hygiene. “Having few toys to play with is no longer an issue to these children, thanks to the pump donated by World Vision in their community,” World Vision communicator Chetra Ten says. “Not only is it providing for their daily water needs, it is their favorite activity for play.” One boy sums up what all the kids think: “I’m always happy when I’m surrounded with water.” These days, it’s a downpour.
©2014 Janet Mbwadzulu/World Vision
PRAYING IN MALAWI: Members of a World Vision Malawi drilling team pray with children and their families in Ching’anda, Malawi. Since 2013, teams have drilled 30 boreholes in the southeastern African country. At least 60 more are slated so that people can have access to safe and potable drinking water. In Malawi, more than a million children are affected by chronic hunger due to prolonged dry spells, rainfall shortages, and flooding. Child mortality is also of grave concern, with thousands of children dying before their fifth birthday. World Vision is helping farmers install irrigation systems for greater crop yields to combat malnutrition.
©2015 Jon Warren/World Vision
PAYOFF IN ETHIOPIA: A World Vision drilling team strikes water. This borehole at Meti Walga village is the first of 23 shallow wells that will be drilled this year. On this day, a sanitation committee is on hand to celebrate the team’s success. Befekadu Gebre, a World Vision manager, says sanitation and hygiene education is critical before drilling projects are conducted. “If you do water without sanitation and hygiene, it is meaningless,” Befekadu says, adding, “We work in schools, and we work to change attitudes.” Research reveals that 58 percent of childhood disease is related to unsafe drinking water, inadequate hygiene, and defecation out in the open. In this area, Befekadu says, they’re solving these problems. Because of this well, “our children won’t have waterborne diseases.”
©2014 Ralph Baydoun/World Vision Lebanon
AWASH IN HOPE IN LEBANON: Two women bathe a baby boy in a temporary settlement in Lebanon. In Syrian Arab tradition, aunts help new mothers care for their newborns. Here, Lubaba, a mother of four children, comes to the aid of her sister, Shawwaga, to bathe her son, Abd Al Rahman. “Before [World Vision] had installed the water tanks, my children used to get sick all the time. Now we know why—because of the water,” Lubaba says. Worldwide, more than 1,600 children die each day from diarrhea caused by unsafe water and poor sanitation and hygiene practices. The baby’s mother is relieved to be able to care for her child. “Thanks to World Vision, I have the means to bathe my children at least two times per week,” Shawwaga says.
©2014 Ana Chkhaidze/World Vision
CLEANSING WATERS IN GEORGIA: A woman washes fruit with clean water at faucet near her home. Youth in the community are part of a World Vision program to improve the safety and quality of drinking water. Whenever residents doubt water quality, young people test samples and share results with officials, including school administrators. “We have to approach the local municipality and show them our laboratory results and advocate for better-quality of drinking water,” says Rezo, 17, a program participant.
©2014 José Luis Roca/World Vision
HEALTHY SMILES IN BOLIVIA: Five-year-old Cecia washes her hands at a water source. World Vision sanitation and hygiene programs in Bolivia help children develop healthy habits like brushing their teeth and hand washing. Cecia’s mother, Daria. says she was not so fortunate as her daughter; when she was a child she drank water from a well shared by animals. “Thanks to World Vision we have potable water in the house, which is clean and economical,” she says. Daria’s grateful for World Vision’s assistance in providing “hygiene materials with access to drinking water—now I provide the materials for my children.”
©2014 World Vision
WORKING TOGETHER IN TIMOR-LESTE: A team in moves a water tank closer to their village. “Now we do not have to walk one hour to fetch water in the river. My family was able to access clean water close to home,” said Julião Rodriques, a father of four children. In just the last two years, World Vision has quadrupled its capacity to provide clean water in the developing world, making it the largest non-profit, non-governmental provider of clean water in rural areas worldwide. World Vision now reaches a new person with clean drinking water every 30 seconds.
©2015 Margret Masanga/World Vision
POWER SURGE IN ZIMBABWE: Men inspect solar panels powering the pump that delivers water to a 10,000-liter tank, then on to a fish pond, nutrition garden, clinic, school, and community water point in the Bandimba village. Access to these basic resources significantly helps reduce disease, infant mortality, and chronic poverty, while improving school attendance and economic development. The abundant water supply provides the means for people to grow vegetables and herbs for a nutritious diet.
©2014 Ani Chitemyan/World Vision
REPLACING OLD WITH NEW IN ARMENIA: Old, dilapidated pipes are no longer in use after being replaced by World Vision in the Davitashen and Suser villages in the Aragatsotn region. “World Vision has replaced these pipelines with new, plastic pipelines which will not get rusty and are safe for health,” says Babken Haroyan, a World Vision staff member in Armenia.
©2014 Hind Shraydeh/World Vision
FLOWING IN THE WEST BANK: A women uses a hose connected to a tanker to fill a water container at her home in the village near Jenin. World Vision water, sanitation, and hygiene programs are expanding water networks to ensure the availability of clean water in impoverished communities in the Middle East.
©2012 Collins Kaumba/World Vision
TIPPY-TAPPING IN ZAMBIA: Thirteen-year-old Febby’s inexpensive outdoor technique for washing hands reaps big rewards in hygiene. “I use a ‘tip tap’ to wash my hands after using the toilet. Before, we used the bush to answer the call of nature and never used to wash hands after going to toilet. I did not know the importance of this, but now I know, because my grandmother has taught me,” Febby says. She has learned that a simple act of washing hands with soap can prevent illness and even save her life.
©2014 Khaing Min Htoo/ World Vision
SANITIZING IN MYANMAR: A World Vision staff member shows villagers of Tharbaung Township how to get clean drinking water by using water filters and water purification packets. This method of purifying water is vital to the villagers as they face clean water shortages during the annual three-month-long rainy season, which causes rivers and sewage to flood and contaminate water sources.
©2012 Collins Kaumba/World Vision
PUMP REPAIR IN ZAMBIA: Maintenance team members, including Victor Mweemba, far right, repair a borehole wellat a school in Munjile. “I make sure that all the 24 boreholes in Munjile area are all functional. Whether drilled by World Vision or not, my job is to work with fellow community members to inspect and repair all boreholes in our area so that no one goes back to drinking dirty water again,” Victor says. “World Vision trained us to ensure that we look after these boreholes on our own.”
©2014 Mong JimenezWorld Vision
FLOURISHING IN PHILIPPINES: France Ubijas, 13, plays at a new water point near his house in Santa Rite, southwestern Philippines. Now, he can happily haul a gallon of clean water—instead of dirty water—to his home. “World Vision is a blessing to us. It helps us have access to a nearby faucet where we can fetch water every day without going through the muddy path again,” he says.
©2014 Melany Markham/World Vision
SEEKING CLARITY IN SOUTH SUDAN: John, an officer for his community’s soil and water assessment team in Kodok, holds a vial of water. The key is to be able to see clearly to the bottom, he says. John daily monitors the quality of water and treats it as necessary. Only 2 percent of households in South Sudan have water, according to a 2010 South Sudan household survey, the most recent available. World Vision is trying to change this by providing water treatment systems to remote communities in South Sudan, like John’s village, where the organization seeks to train residents.
©2014 Narges Ghafary/World Vision
GRATITUDE IN AFGHANISTAN: A well is good news for this girl in Robata Pariyan, Afghanistan. Children, who are often absent from class to help their families, now attend school, thanks to a new, 98-foot-deep well World Vision drilled in their community. Before, villagers depended on water from shallow, salty wells; waterborne disease was rampant, and sickness often caused children to miss school. In addition to providing Afghans with safe drinking water, World Vision—which has worked in the country since 2001—focuses on increasing children’s access to education and improving child and maternal health.