Why Abraham wanted water for his kids

Ethiopia landscape

The place Abraham calls home.

“To relieve the pain of water collection for my kids, I took a small loan.”

Abraham lives outside of Boditi in the beautiful, foggy hills of southern Ethiopia. He is a widower and father of six. Since his wife’s passing, Abraham has worked hard to provide for their children. Something critical to their livelihood that his late wife had provided for so many years was water. Abraham knew his wife worked hard alongside him, but it was not until her passing that he recognized the weight of the burden she and so many women in Ethiopia carry daily—collecting that water for their family.

Abraham works construction during the days so, in his wife’s absence, his children took up the chore, and he helped them when he could. Each day the burden weighed heavier on his heart and mind because Abraham didn’t want his kids walking to collect water. Refusing to let his children spend their time finding water rather than at school, Abraham sought a solution to his family’s water crisis. The temporary solution was to purchase water from a vendor in his village. But it was an hour round trip to walk to and from the kiosk—and the price of the water was out of Abraham’s weekly budget. What was he to do?


Abraham is a widower and father of six

Ethiopia village
“I want my children to attend the public university. If they can’t, I am willing to pay for a private education. They deserve it.”

Water.org's work in Ethiopia paved the way for people like Abraham to answer that question and to achieve affordable access to safe water for their families.

Thanks to Water.org’s work with financial institutions across the country, a local bank offered small loans for water and sanitation solutions to Abraham’s community. As one of their customers, Abraham learned about the loans and knew he could afford a small monthly payment versus continue to struggle day-to-day to give his family water. With his loan, Abraham purchased a water tap and connected it to the local utility line. Now Abraham, his three sons, and his three daughters all have access to safe water on their property.

As he ended his story Abraham looked up as if he were sending a message to his wife. He said, “Reducing the time spent collecting water gives my kids time to study. I am so proud I can give this time to them.”

His kids weren’t home when Abraham shared his story, because they were all at school.

Learn more about why access to safe water and sanitation is access to education and bright futures. Go here.

Water.org no longer has active programs in Ethiopia. Learn more about where we currently work.