One hot November day, residents of Azacualpa, Honduras greeted the water team from the Presbytery of Northern Kansas and Collierville (Tennessee) Presbyterian Church at the site where they would soon install an LWW water purification system. The mission team members who would train their Honduran partners to install and operate the system remained at the water site and began to get acquainted.
Water team members arrive at the water building in Azacualpa and draw
the attention of local children
The mission team members who would train local health educators headed down the rocky dirt road to the Iglesia at which a group of eight community members had gathered. In addition to the pastor of the Iglesia, seven "guide mothers" had assembled for this three-day training and were eager to learn the curriculum they would use to lead ongoing health education.
Among the guide mothers was Nidia, whose big, contagious smile and vivacious personality immediately drew us to her.
Nidia smiles in costume for a Bible lesson.
She explained that she and the guide mothers were advocates for the health and well-being of women and children in their community. They were there to learn how to convey the importance of using clean water to the families with which they worked. Nidia said, "Now that we have the Living Waters we hope that our lives and the lives of our children will get better."
Over the course of three days, the educators learned to teach lessons on the dangers of germ infested waters, the need for good hand-washing practices, and the importance of water throughout the Bible.
Nidia hugs her children while on break from health education training
The knowledge that her children Javier and Alma would soon have access to clean, safe water filled Nidia with gratitude. She understood that safe drinking water would keep children healthy as they grew and developed. For her own children, she was accustomed to collecting water from a spring accessible by a steep, rocky footpath - water that she then had to boil for their consumption. She was excited for the opportunity to soon provide her family with purified water from Azacualpa's LWW system.
Nidia and her family welcomed us to their home on top of a steep hill under the ample shade of banana trees.
At the installation celebration Nidia's hope was shared by many members of her community. The children sang songs, the health educators acted out a Bible story, and dignitaries and leaders from the Department of Santa Barbara and the village of Azacualpa marked the arrival of affordable, sustainable clean water for the community.
And clean water flowed for Nidia, Alma, Javier and the people of Azacualpa, Honduras!