From the Field

When you walk for clean water, these kids win

walk for clean water

The children of Chepoyotwo village have never seen a paved road, a light switch, or a water fountain. Their lives are as harsh as their isolated environment — the dry Kesot River basin in northwest Kenya.

Their walk for water

From the nearest asphalt road, only a skilled driver in a four-wheel-drive vehicle can navigate the grueling, lurching, three-hour crawl over pitted dirt tracks to reach their huts. On arrival, chattering children swarm the vehicle and ask if it’s a “grown-up motorcycle.”

Visitors are a rare distraction to children who spend hours a day, and most of their energy, walking more than 6 kilometers (3.7 miles) to find and carry water for their families and livestock. They are among the 319 million people in sub-Saharan Africa who lack access to improved sources of water. Women and children average a 6K walk each day to bring home dirty water. They have no other choice.

But like children everywhere, these kids smile and look for fun in their daily routine. And their parents, like parents everywhere, simply want a better life for their children.

But first they need water. So the children walk from home to the watering hole to collect water to use at school each day. After school, they walk back to the watering hole to collect water to take home.

If the parents have their way and easily accessible clean water comes to Chepoyotwo, these boys and girls will take a new path that leads beyond the waterhole to opportunities in higher education and careers.

When you walk for clean water, they win

Walk the Global 6k for Water, and you’ll help bring clean, safe water to kids like these.

Meet Cheru and the children of the 6K in this portrait gallery by World Vision photographer Jon Warren. Each child holds a water jug they’ve chosen — the bigger the child, the bigger the jug. Their faces reflect optimism and strength beyond their circumstances.

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