Safe water, sanitation, and education for Monica

Monica and her family standing in front of their house in Peru

Monica’s mother works in the United States and sends money home. Her funds allow Monica to study cosmetology, her younger brother to attend school, and for the family to build a home that includes a water connection and toilet.

Monica is studying to be a cosmetologist, and can’t wait to graduate. The optimism in her eyes and the confidence in her tone demonstrate readiness to see her hard work blossom into a career. Monica’s mother has inspired her ambition. A few years ago her mother moved to the United States where she could earn more money. She sends money home to Monica, her holder sister, and their younger brother to support their livelihood in the family’s hometown.

Monica poses in front of her home Monica poses in front of her home.

Together, the three children are building on to the family home to create a more comfortable living environment. Additionally, they are using part of their mother’s monthly contributions to repay their WaterCredit loan; the loan that has afforded them access to safe water and the construction of a private bathroom.

A neighbor washes laundry with water from Monica's tap A neighbor washes laundry with water from Monica's tap.

Both solutions are rare for families in this village. Water is usually sourced from a local pond, and relieving oneself usually happens in a nearby field. Yet, because they have both, Monica and her brother’s time can be spent achieving educations. While she is working hard to become a cosmetologist, 15-year-old Ben loves mathematics and aspires to attend Central University of Peru to study civil engineering.

Monica's niece poses with the family pet Monica's niece poses with the family pet.

Monica and her brother are examples of how access to water and improved sanitation can free kids from focusing on survival, to focusing on bright futures. The possibilities that come when kids are not walking to find a safe place to defecate or to find water are seemingly endless. For this soon-to-be cosmetologist and hopeful civil engineer, financing needed solutions has truly been the path to a better life.

Watch this video to learn more about why we believe WaterCredit is a better path to help millions solve their water and sanitation crisis.

This story was made possible by a generous grant from the Caterpillar Foundation.

Capital: Lima
Population of 31.1 million
4 million lack access to safe water
7.5 million lack access to improved sanitation
8% of the total population lives on less than US$2 per day