At the Waterhole

Description

Facing down a herd of camels, children in a semi-arid region of West Pokot County, Kenya, dig for water in a dry riverbed.

Camels, cows, goats, and wild animals, including swarms of bees, compete for the water. So do other families.

Girls and boys walk to the waterhole each morning to take a turn digging and scooping water. Sometimes they have to wait a long time for their turn, so they won’t let camels turn them away.

The children work together to fill their jerry cans with water their families need for cooking, washing, and drinking. 

During the driest time of year – months when there is no rain – bees are worse than the camels.

“We go very early to fetch water then, and we take our animals toward evening, when the bees are less,” says Samson, the children’s father.  

“We have to watch the children when the bees are looking for water,” says Monica, who has three children under age five. Bees will swarm on a child’s face when their nose is running; they’ll collect there and around mucusy eyes and wet clothing when a child urinates.

6K is the average distance women and children in Africa have to walk for water – water that you wouldn’t dare drink.

Photo©2016 World Vision, Jon Warren

Find out how you can run or walk for water so children in developing countries won't have to.

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