Today Juanita rests
Juanita has lived in the same community for more than half her life. She’s seen how a lack of access to safe water challenges families in Mexico and unfortunately, how little access to safe water has improved over the years in her community outside the village of Xochimilco. She explained her recent situation, “We suffer a lot of water issues, especially when the pump burns out… we have to get water from the well by San Luis... it is about half an hour from here if you have a car. If not, you walk and have to climb the hill with your water bottles.” Juanita explained that even the water she bought from a distant source was often unclean. Her family sought a safe, healthy solution.
Much of Juanita's income selling tamales was spent piecing together enough water for her children and grandchildren to survive. When the local water supply did not operate and the water trucks did not deliver subsidized water, Juanita and her daughter purchased bottled water. The bottled water was expensive. Because of the expense and unreliability, Juanita explained her family would frequently go a week at a time without water to bathe, do laundry, or clean. It was helpful when the water trucks that delivered to her grandchildren’s school would offer free water to families like Juanita's, but this was not a consistant, reliable source. Juanita’s family needed a long-term safe water solution at home.
It is for families like Juanita’s that Water.org does the work we do in Mexico and around the world. Juanita’s family was already paying a high price for water in time and money. So, when the opportunity to finance a safe water solution was presented to Juanita by representatives from Water.org’s local partner bank in Mexico, Juanita, her daughter, and her son-in-law knew this was the answer to solve their water crisis.
A small loan made a big difference in Juanita’s life. Now the family has a water storage tank on their property in which they can store water delivered from the local utility. The tank holds enough water for all of their domestic needs. Now Juanita’s grandchildren have the water they need for baths, drinking, and healthy days at school. Now the grandmother of four says, “Today I rest.” Because less income is needed to purchase water for her family, now the 70-year-old closes her tamale shop on Saturdays to enjoy time with her family.