Yasin Lekomon lives just 200 meters from the Laresoro well. At 36, Yasin has seven children. The oldest, 20, is now a shepherd taking care of the family goats, far from here. The others are in the school, except for her 3 year old who does not separate from her.
“Before we had to walk very far to get dirty and dark water, like a soup of clay, that we collected with a lot of patience, and we carry back to our house. We spent practically all day working to get the water”. Now she comes to the well each morning, and collects as much water as she needs, for the family and also for the cattle. “I go to sleep peacefully every night. I know that tomorrow I will get up and I will have water. Before the well, sometimes, I could not sleep wondering if I was going to be able to collect enough water the next day. “
The life of Yasin and all the families living in this area and even the families that have settled here after the opening of the well, has changed radically. From spending almost all daylight hours busy getting and transporting water, the women can now experience the incredible feeling of being able to dedicate the day to other activities, take care of their children, play with them; cook without being in a hurry and having meals that are more tasty and healthy; meet in the shade of the trees to chat with other women while they make their wonderful necklaces of beads. Yasin tells me, blushing, as if she felt guilty to admit it, “to rest for a few moments when the sun is at its highest in the sky and makes breathing difficult.” All that, before the well, was simply impossible.
Drinking water without limits and without fear of contracting diseases. This is, undoubtedly, the main advantage of the well, but it is by no means the only one. The health of these communities has undergone a huge qualitative leap: the incidence of diarrhea, cholera and other serious diseases that were common before has dropped dramatically, and the toilet and cleaning habits have changed radically. Yasin does not have a doubt about it and tells me that one of the things she likes most about life “after the well” is to be able to wash the clothes and enjoy its beautiful and bright colors. Before our clothes had only one color, the brown color of the earth.”
The well has made me happy, and the only thing I would like is to get more wells drilled in the area. Many, many people from the area come here once they find out about this well, and sometimes we are too many to collect water. The next well should be on the other side of the river.” It is then that I realize that the immense road of fine dusty sand passing by the Laresoro well is the bed of a dry river.
Stay tuned for more Samburu Stories as we introduce you to other families in the Laresoro well community who benefit from clean water because of The Samburu Project and donors like you.
This Samburu Story was written by Cristina Saura
and features photographs by Mamen Saura.
Go to http://www.thesamburuproject.org to read more
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provide clean water to families in Samburu, Kenya.