When you need a glass of water, or need to brush your teeth or wash your dishes, where do you get your water? Do you turn on the tap in the kitchen? Or get water out of the fridge? For many kids around the world, access to safe water is still a huge issue. They walk many miles to gather water that is contaminated. This makes them vulnerable to diseases like cholera, dysentery and typhoid.

These 13 kids around the world will show you the diverse ways children in poverty get their water. (Want to pray for kids in need of water? Scroll to the end for prayer prompts.)

A note about these photos: Every country contains a lot of variety. These children’s experiences aren’t representative of their country as a whole. But they represent the experiences of the low-income communities where our church partners serve.


Northern Colombia: By Tricycle Cart 

body4.jpgNicolas rides in a tricycle cart holding water jugs, as his mum pedals.

Getting water is a fun ride for Nicolas, but it’s a lot more work for his mum, Dellys. Each day, she borrows a tricycle cart from a neighbour to transport 12 jugs of water from the community well to her home. At home, they store the water in a large water tank so that they don’t have to take so many trips on the tricycle.


Arusha, Tanzania: By Foot 

body9.jpgVicky and Jackline stand on a street, holding buckets

Vicky in Tanzania used to wake in the early hours of the morning to gather water from three different community taps. If one ran out of water, she’d walk to the next. If that one ran out, she’d walk to the last option. Now Jackline, Vicky’s daughter, can access water at a well at her child development center. It’s close enough to their home that they can walk together, carrying the buckets on their heads, before Jackline goes to school.


Northern Peru: At the River

body7.jpgA boy leans over a river with a cup.

In the town of Tamarindo, in Northern Peru, people get their water from the Chira River. But this untreated water can cause internal parasites, which made the children in the town sick, thin and lethargic. Our local church partner installed a water-purification system, and now children have access to safe water!


Northern Sri Lanka: By Water Filter

body8.jpg Avishka stands inside holding a water filter connecting one bucket to another.

Getting water to drink is a two-step process for Avishka in Sri Lanka. First, she pumps water at the community well. Then, she carries it home in a wooden bucket and puts it through a water filter so that it will be safe to drink.


Southern Honduras: Up a Hill

body1.jpgFour children in Honduras walk up a hill carrying water buckets

Children and families in the rural town of El Muneco in southern Honduras gather water at a well at the local church. In their hilly community, it can be quite a hike, while carrying a heavy water bucket on your shoulder!


Rift Valley, Kenya: From the Rain 

body6.jpg A woman with a baby on her back stands in front of a mud house with a water tank.

Josephine in Kenya stores water for her children in a rainwater tank. The drains and pipes from her roof channel rain into a storage tank. A few good days of rain can provide water for three months!


Kalimantan, Indonesia: From the Swimming Hole 

body5.jpg Three boys jump into a ditch next to a city block.

Water is for more than just drinking. Families also have to find water for bathing, doing dishes and laundry, and for toilets. Sadly, sometimes one water source will fill all these different needs, making the water unsafe. These children in Indonesia visit the river each day to bathe, while their moms come to wash dishes and laundry. But community toilets also feed into the river.


Outside La Paz, Bolivia: From a Water Pump 

body3.jpgMaria water from a pump while a boy pumps.

Maria, who live outside of La Paz, Bolivia, gets her water from a water pump. Some of the other families in her community get water from the river, but Maria has learned at her child development centre that drinking untreated river water can make her sick.

Pray for Safe Water for Kids Around the World

May a child’s journey to water be an inspiration to you to pray for the hundreds of thousands of children who struggle to find even a single source of safe, healthy water.

Please pray:
  • For protection for the boys and girls whose long walks to gather safe water often leave them alone and at risk.
  • or the health of the children who unknowingly drink contaminated water each day.
  • For our church partners as they seek innovative ways to build bathrooms and provide drinking water to Compassion-assisted children.
  • For partners to come alongside us as we work to build improved water sources for the children we serve.
  • Help Kids Around the World Get Safe Water  

body2.jpgA boy in a blue sweater holds a glass of water.

It’s because of sponsors and partners like you that more children are able to access safe water. Each of the children in this article were able to access things like water filters, wells, storage tanks and rainwater harvesting systems because of generous donors! You can continue to help our church partners as they help children in poverty get safe water.

Recent posts

Why I decided to break up with fast-fashion and quit shopping for a year.

Why I decided to break up with fast-fashion and quit shopping for a year.

Thursday, 21 October 2021 — Morgan Theakston

According to Google’s wisdom, recovering from a breakup takes half the amount of time that the relationship lasted. I spent 15 years being wooed by racks of the latest trends under florescent lights and streams of brightly coloured packages from seemingly never-ending online sales. Their persuasion was unrelenting—I needed them to be attractive and, if I’m honest, to feel worthy as a woman in today’s world. So, according to the internet’s theory, I should be good-to-go in about seven years! 

 

Read more

Why periods are no longer a red light

Why periods are no longer a red light

Monday, 11 October 2021 — Compassion International

Today is International Day of the Girl Child where we recognise the rights and unique challenges girls face globally. One of the many challenges they face is period poverty. Millions of girls in developing countries experience shame, confusion and even stigma and discrimination when they get their period. The good news is in Compassion centres around the world, girls are finding education, protection, empowerment, safe bathrooms and period supplies.

 

Read more

World Mental Health Day: What war, natural disasters and Covid-19 lockdowns have in common

World Mental Health Day: What war, natural disasters and Covid-19 lockdowns have in common

Friday, 08 October 2021 — Carl Adams

Over the past 18 months, we have faced significant uncertainty as Covid-19 unleashed itself on communities at home and the world over. As a humanitarian worker, I’ve responded to people’s needs following earthquakes, flooding, tsunami and horrific acts of genocide. There are some striking similarities between these crises and Covid-19 lockdowns from a mental health perspective.

 

Read more

If only you knew: Owen’s story

If only you knew: Owen’s story

Monday, 04 October 2021 — Compassion International

When Owen found out he was sponsored, his mother spun him around the room, his brothers jumped up and down and their faces lit up with huge grins. Owen knew his life was about to change, but what he didn’t expect was through his sponsor’s letters, he would first hear the words “I love you”. Owen and his sponsor became the best of friends through letter-writing. His sponsor even flew to Kenya to be the best man at his wedding! This year, Owen was invited to write one last letter to his former sponsor. It had been 12 years since they last wrote to one another.

 

Read more

Some of the best sponsorship stories that came out of a global pandemic

Some of the best sponsorship stories that came out of a global pandemic

Friday, 24 September 2021 — Compassion International

Life under Covid-19 lockdown has been tough, especially for those living in poverty. Compassion’s Zoe Noakes shares some inspiring examples of how the pandemic didn’t stop people from showing up for each other—like the young man who rode a buffalo around his community with a karaoke machine to spread joy and raise funds for Covid-19 patients.

 

Read more

Three ways to pray for the child you sponsor

Three ways to pray for the child you sponsor

Tuesday, 21 September 2021 — Compassion International

It can be hard to know how to pray for your sponsored child if you don’t understand their cultural context or what they’re going through. Children in different countries can experience poverty in various ways. In this short blog, we suggest three things you can pray for.

 

Read more

Time to be kind to Afghans

Time to be kind to Afghans

Tuesday, 14 September 2021 — Josie Pagani

Council for International Development director Josie Pagani calls the withdrawal from Afghanistan a disaster, and says the New Zealand Government should take in a thousand Afghan refugees in this year’s refugee quota. She also says we need to back the offer Turkey made to the Afghan Government to run chartered evacuation and aid flights through Kabul airport.
 

Read more

Show more