Seventy-nine years ago, Francisca Riz’s mother strapped her baby to her back and walked the path that winds 2.5 km down the mountainous terrain from her home of Chixicol to the creek at the foot of a valley where they collect their water. Today, Francisca holds the tiny hand of her 4-year old grandson, Leonardo, as he tugs her up the same path towards water. When they reach the creek, they will meet Francisca’s daughter there, where she has been washing the family's clothes.
Chixocol is home to 200 families, more than 1,200 people. The community is 3 km away from Zacualpa, the closest municipality. With no safe road into the community, families like Francisca’s are isolated from the luxuries of the town - abundant food, a market, plumbing, and clean water. To drink, cook, bathe, wash, and feed animals, families – especially women and children – must make the long, exhausting trek 2-3 times daily, carrying heavy loads of water up the mountain to their homes. This walk takes up to 60 minutes and Francisca, Leonardo and his sisters will spend 2-3 hours everyday simply walking.
A secure supply of clean water would provide Francisca’s family, and other families in Chixocol, with the health, time, and dignified opportunities to improve their livelihoods. A gift of $600 gives one family clean water for life, and with it, the opportunity to work towards a much different future.