Nicaraguan communities learn about sanitation, hygiene, and Christ from peers

By September 5, 2012

Nicaragua (MNN) — With over 75 rivers, 32 lagoons, and two lakes, 15% of Nicaragua’s surface is water. Yet, over 20% of Nicaraguans lack access to a source of clean, safe water. Living Water International has been drilling wells along the Pacific coast of Nicaragua since 2001.

But what happens when those wells break?

Broken pumps aren't the only challenge facing rural communities. They also lack the necessary training, spare parts to fix broken ones, community investment, and an infrastructure to support the needed repairs. When access to sanitary water is lost, people return to their old water sources: rivers and ponds chock-full of waterborne diseases. And the water crisis starts all over again.

To break this cycle and make clean water sustainable in Nicaragua, LWI started the Operation and Maintenance (O&M) pilot program. It's designed to transfer sanitation and hygiene education into homes, and most importantly, the love of Christ into hearts. The goal is to shift well maintenance and repair completely into the private sector.

LWI equipped and trained a Nicaraguan well maintenance and repair business, which then trained a team of locals to reach the surrounding communities. Members of this team organize communities, work with a network of primarily women-run water committees, maintain and repair wells, assure water quality, and partner with local churches to share the Gospel.

Pray for boldness as local teams share Christ with their neighbors.

Over time, LWI tapers its financial investment as sanitation and Christian witness activities are passed on to families, communities, and churches by the Nicaraguan teams.

You can support LWI's efforts in Nicaragua by donating. Or, you can create an advocacy page to raise awareness and funds for LWI projects like the O&M pilot program.

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