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Bringing New Garden Hoses to Honduras Farmers

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Just got back from a two week trip to Hondrus where I got to see the water crisis first hand. Most people have no idea that Hondrus is the second poorest country in Central America according to water.org, and probably the world. Things were not looking good for the people I was helping out. Many of the farmers are out of business because they can’t get enough water to their farms.

For my trip to Hondrus I brought a suitcase of different expandable hoses that I gave to the farmers. The expandable hoses are great because they weigh about two pounds and don’t take up much suitcase room. The guys at customs were looking at me funny but I told them I wanted to bring the farmers some high quality garden hoses.

expandable hose Last time I was in Hondrus they were using 20 year old tubes for their main water hose. This is probably why a lot of people get sick… I searched for discounted hoses online decided to just by some new ones on Amazon instead. I wanted to find the best quality for the health of the farmers and their crops and gardenhoseadviser has a ton of great info on what the hoses are made of. In particular the expandable hose was my favorite because they are so lightweight.

When I got to Hondrus I stayed in a small farming community, outside of Choloma. The people were great and the weather was perfect. When I brought them their garden hoses they couldn’t believe it. They were all like kids on Christmas. I even brought the old man that I lived with last year a new metal garden hose that I saw on TV and he couldn’t believe it. He connected it right away and started using it. I’ve never seen someone so happy to get a hose.

While in Choloma I taught some of the locals some English and we spent a lot of time fixing the faucets for the hoses to work. Most of the plumbing in Central America is terrible and the water pressure makes it tough for a hose. The bad thing about these expandable hoses is that they require water pressure to fully expand. I wish I would have known that before I bought 50 of them. So, we tried to increase the water flow in the fields, to at least expand the hoses from 20 feet to 60 feet.

We finally got the hose thing sorted out by adjusting the pressure in the nozzle. I’m not sure if that was the best idea but I tried. If I were to bring these guys rubber garden hoses I could have only brought a few because they weigh so much. The metal hose worked the best but those are too expensive to bring too many of them down.

We spent a lot of time picking coffee beans, which is how the farmers make their money around the area I lived. Coffee is great and easy to grow because it doesn’t require much water. It’s a shame that many of the farmers have stopped farming due to their lack of water. If they had more water and more garden hoses they could continue farming. How much does a good garden hose cost, around $20? If each house had one of these then they could improve their health.

Overall, the drip was great and bit depressing at the same time. It was fun to bring them all the hoses that I promised them and next time I told them I would bring some water filters. The weather was great and the people are happy, despite not having much clean water. It’s kind of a pain in the you know what when you can’t get you water, but what are you doing to about it?

India FacesThe Worst Water Crisis in Generations

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A girl fills metal pitchers with drinking water from a tubewell outside a temple in Ahmedabad, India March 30, 2017. REUTERS/Amit Dave

2017 is not going so well for the resident of India. Worldwide drought has hit India harder than most countries. For over a century the municipal water has been mishandled and mistreated. Taken for granted as something that would always be there forever. However, now the find people of India realize that they should have paid a little bit more attention to the incompetence set forth by local municipal water companies.

The population boom in India over the past 100 years has led to this worsening water crisis. By the year 2050, the population is expected to read 1.7 billion. The middle class is all but gone and the rich are using more water than all the poor.

To make things worse there has not been any serious attempt at fixing this issue at the state level. There are no plans to implement water relief to villagers that can’t water their crops or feed their livestock. This is mainly due to politics and internal strife in the government to implement a hard choice for the people of India.

The graph shows just how much the population of India has risen over the past decade and the amount of water that each person consumes. There is no doubt that within a few years the population will be much lower if they don’t get their water.

Here is what you may commonly see in many of the shops and local venues in the cities. The water drips out of the faucet very slowly and many people have to wait in line for hours to fill up just one bucket of water.

Many of the times the water may be contaminated or full of pollutants, who knows what you’re drinking? Not to mention that the pipes are old and rusty which will also make you ill. If you think that’s bad, you should see what the people that live outside of the city have to do to get there daily dose of water.

Most villagers that live in rural areas can hardly call themselves farmers anymore. Without water you can’t grow crops and many of the families that have farmed the lush fertile lands of India for centuries have turned to other jobs.

Here we can see a young women riding a bike while she brings several water jugs back to her home. If you think that looks easy… Most people are not lucky enough to afford a bike and will have to walk on foot to get their water from the nearest creek or river.

“Surface water conditions are bad. However, the groundwater situation is even worse”

The extraction of the groundwater is something that will change India forever. In most parts of the country they don’t do any groundwater extraction because of the price. Not to mention that levels of groundwater are declining yearly. In some parts of India there is in fact no groundwater at all.

Villagers from various Indian states shout slogans during a protest demonstration to highlight the water shortage across the country in New Delhi, India, Thursday, May 5, 2016. Much of India is reeling under heat wave and severe drought conditions that have decimated crops, killed livestock and left at least 330 million Indians without enough water for their daily needs. (AP Photo/Altaf Qadri)

When you can’t find any water and your friends, family and children begin dying then it’s time to stand up (or in this case sit down) and protest. The people of India can not continue to live in worsening conditions and hope things will get better.

The only way things are going to get better is if you fight for your rights and make your voice heard.

Clean Water Disappearing Fast in Bangladesh

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As of the beginning of 2017 the availability of clean drinking water in Bangladesh is expected to get worse. As Bangladesh is experiencing some of the most drastic climate changes in living memory, families are having to spend hours a day hunting down fresh drinking water. It looks as thought this water crisis and sanitation issue is not getting any better anytime soon…

About 20% of the population of Bangladesh are living in conditions that most people can’t imagine. Out in the country side droughts have made it nearly impossible to get clean drinking water. People living out of the cities are also more prone to natural disasters such as flooding and earthquakes. Making families have to travel miles just to get a pitcher of drinking water.

“Finding fresh water here

is like finding gold”

The weather has worsened nearly every year and this of course is contributing to water not being drinkable. Flooding of riverbanks and erosion pollutes the water, making families often times having to send there children out to get water, rather than go to school.

Mithun mondal carrying water in Koira, sathkhira, bangladesh

Many experts believe that the struggle for Bangladesh will not get better anytime soon. Now that summer is approaching the problem will worsen and may lead to many new problems for those living in rural areas.
Surface water has all but dried up in most parts of Bangladesh, which will make finding clean drinking water nearly impossible without the use of filters. In many areas, such as the Barind Tract area in north Bangladesh you have to dig nearly 300 meters underground to find safe underground drinking water.

The water supply in several major cities has even reported to be dwindling as the months pass. Groundwater is disappearing at a drastic rate, according to Bangladesh Agricultural Development Corporation. They say that this crisis is of the utmost importance and getting clean water to their people is the number one priority for the year 2017.

In many places good clean drinking water become more valuable than gold. You can’t drink gold, can you? And without water you will die. If there is no water to buy with your gold, then what good is gold?

As of the first quarter of 2017, Bangladesh has been experiencing some extremem cclimate changed. Cyclones and flash foods have been ravaging small towns and villages. Making finding clean water impossible.

“We now frequently face cyclones and flash floods which cause the swamping of croplands by saltwater and put us in danger”

Said Shafiqul, a farmer in a southern Bangladesh rural area. Places where Shafiqul lives are extremely hard to reach places according to the world health organization. You literally need a plane to get to these places, as most of these areas do not have road.

Using whatever pots they can afford, most Bangladeshi farmers get up at the crack of dawn and travel 2-5 miles to a small pond where they can fill up their container. Often times passing by rusty pumps that were previously used to get well and ground water but have now dried up or have been damaged in natural disasters.

Once the arrive at the river they fill there pots and begin the journey home. This will hopefully last the family for a day at most and then the process starts again in the morning.

Bangladesh’s water crisis affects both rural and urban areas

About 20 years ago there were fresh water ponds and wells that everyone could use for drinking and cooking water. As time went on, all of those sources of water began to gradually vanish. Now, most of the morning is spent just making to a clean water source and back home again. Villagers understand just how precious every drop of water is and must be used as sparingly as possible.

The average rainfall has dropped to the lowest in recorded history, about 1200 mm. The national average being around 2300 mm. There is some hope though.

Organizations like the Barind Multipurpose Development Authority (BMDA) have begun installing wells and providing fresh drinking water to members of small towns that were previously unable to get good drinking water.

This will also help agricultural communities to produce more food by bringing out as much water from the earth as they can. Many times well water is not enough if you have a farm and if you have no water you can’t farm at all.

Will Ethiopia Overcome the Worst Drought in 50 Years?

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Konso, Ethiopia.

Nearly one tenth of all people who suffer from the lack of clean water live in Ethiopia. That’s right, more than 80 million locals are finding it nearly impossible to find clean water to cook, clean or more importantly drink.

The average yearly salary for resident of Ethiopia is less than $100. Making it nearly impossible to afford drinking water, if they must purchase it. Water should be free however, shouldn’t it? Raising awareness to this disturbing fact is our goal. The global water crisis has never been worse and Ethiopia is taking the beating like no other country.

“The news coming out of the East African nation is of the worst drought in 50 years.”

Ethiopia is probably the poorest country in the world. Now, they are being hit with terrible droughts and famines which is not improving the economy. almost 90% of the population lives in rural areas, outside of large cities. They depend on farming for their food and if there is no water, they cannot farm. About 15% of the population currently has access to easy to find drinking water. The sanitation of the water has made most areas undrinkable.

Thousands of people are falling ill every year due to the lack of water. Drinking contaminated water will kill you pretty quickly and the little food that they have does not help them. Livestock has begun to die as well from drinking the contaminated water and more and more people are turning to suicide, so that they don’t suffer the horrible fate as those before them.

Areas Hit the Hardest

The Southern Nations of Ethiopia, which has a population of about 40 million has been hit the worst by this water crisis. They cover roughly half of the country and have almost no drinking water. Raising livestock and farming has been going on in this region for many decades and now it has all but come to a halt.

The majority of people in these rural areas rely on unclean river or stream water to drink. They do not use water filters and thus can become extremely ill and often times die. The average amount of time they need to spend each day just to find and get a jar of clean drinking water is about 60 minutes per day. And that is only for one person. What about pets, animals, or watering your garden?

However, not all children are experiencing these worsening conditions. Many have made the decision to move and have found living in other places to be much better. The tradition for most kids here is to go with the grandparents to the stream, collect as much water as they can and then come home and boil it. This takes up much of the day, preventing most kids from going to school.

Another thing most people don’t think about in this worsening water crisis, is politics. Why has the government allowed this to happened and what are they doing to help?

“Disney knows children, so it’s no wonder that they feel at home on Castaway Cay”

This 2017 El Nino drought combined with little to no relied from foreign countries will put the hammer on Ethiopia. The international community should not be allowed to let this happen. Short term solutions are getting more funding and in December of 2016 the U.S. declared they would invest $88 million in aid to the water crisis in Ethiopia. However, the United Nations is leading the way, already spending more than $1.4 Billion in helping farmers dig holes to find clean water, as well as bring bottled water to them.

Ethopia is a land filled with wonderful people and amazing culture. At the moment however, it has been affected by so much drought and water shortage that the country may never recover. Many people are leaving and hoping to find clean drinking water in other countries where they can begin a new life. Having to worry about getting your water every day is not fun and most people can’t imagine what they are going thought in Ethopia.

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