For those of us born in developed areas, a world without safe water is hard to imagine. But for students like Supreme Celanda—a fourth-grader in rural Haiti—they’re reality.
Before Watering Minds came to her town, the only water Supreme had access to at school came from a hand-dug well full of frogs. The water was untreated and unsafe. Supreme and her fellow students struggled with stomach issues often.
And then one day, Supreme collapsed.
“I was unconscious when I was taken to the hospital,” she recalls. “[When I got there], I found out I had cholera.”
Cholera is an acute, diarrheal illness that claims 95,000 lives per year. It’s transmitted by drinking infected water—like that in the well at school—or eating infected food.
Supreme and her family were terrified.
“I was vomiting all the time. I had diarrhea too. I couldn’t eat. I couldn’t taste anything. I got seriously dehydrated,” she says. “It was very difficult for me. I couldn’t see my classmates. I couldn’t go to school.”
Ultimately, Supreme was one of the lucky ones. She recovered from her illness and was able to go back to school. But the danger of the well was still ever present. Cholera and other waterborne illnesses were still a significant risk.
And then something that felt like a miracle to the small, poor community happened:
A donor stepped up and sponsored Supreme’s school – bringing safe, clean water to her and her 95 classmates – and that changed everything.
“The children don’t get sick anymore,” says headmaster Pierre. “We all feel better now.”
“We have no more diarrhea. We are no longer sick,” Supreme’s mom Beline adds. “The water is clean. We thank God.”
The truth is that the work is far from done. There are thousands more kids like Supreme that need our help to get safe, clean water that helps them stay healthy, stay in school, and grow up to be strong, vital parts of their local communities.
Changing everything for a child like Supreme costs just $3 per year per child. If that sounds like a small price to pay (and we agree), join us by sponsoring a school or making a one-time donation to the kids that need you most.