Honduras map outline
Quick Facts
Capital: Tegucigalpa
Population of 8.4 million
758,000 lack access to safe water
1.4 million lack access to improved sanitation
29% of the total population lives on less than US$2 per day

Honduras' Water Crisis

Water.org’s very first project was in Honduras, in 1990. Today, we have helped more than 40 Honduran communities build their own safe drinking water systems. We are proud to say that more than 11,000 people in rural Honduras now have adequate access to safe drinking water, thanks to the support of our donors, our Honduran partner organizations, and the hard work and dedication of community members.

Our program in Honduras focuses on the Departments of Lempira and Intibuca, in western Honduras. The once heavily forested Departments now suffer from deforestation. This has led to extreme depletion of the local water tables, forcing women and children to walk far distances to collect water for their families.

The Water & Sanitation Crisis in Honduras

Honduras is the knee of Central America, bordered to the south by Nicaragua and El Salvador, and to the west by Guatemala. In the rural regions, nearly 63% of the population is considered extremely poor, living on less than a dollar a day.

Families often work as subsistence farmers—growing only enough to feed their own families, and leaving very little money for other purchases.

In 1998 Honduras was devastated by Hurricane Mitch. The tiny country was the hardest hit by Mitch’s rampage. Mitch was followed by three days of rain that caused landslides and floods, burying towns and killing thousands of people. Many of the rural communities were devastated. The hurricane caused $58 million in damages and left 75% of the country without safe drinking water.

Reconstruction efforts are continuing. However, until they are complete, in these areas families are forced to rely on contaminated water supplies, and the prevalence of waterborne diseases like cholera is increasing. Mosquitoes that carry malaria and dengue fever are also a problem.

In addition to the health issues it creates, poor access to water also causes overall development to stagnate. Many women and children in the rural areas of Honduras spend up to six hours each day simply fetching water and carrying it home on their heads.