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Members of the OneWay Africa team drove to one of the small villages where the water filters are having significant impact. Water is life in the bush where women and children spend hours walking miles to find water. Most of the boreholes (wells) donated by non-government organizations are close to the road, where a large drill rig can be driven in. 

The team departed from the main road and drove the truck down a motorcycle and donkey path for twenty minutes bringing them to one of the countless small villages. In these remote areas, the only water available is miles away in ponds and rivers where livestock wallow.

The water filters that Ray Mensah helped distribute months ago are inexpensive but priceless to the village. They are made locally. A simple clay filter and plastic bucket allows gravity to slowly pull the water through the spigot at the bottom. 

This visit to the village was to help refine the program and understand if there were problems with how the filters were being used. As is the custom, the team stopped first at the chief’s hut to thank him for letting Ray donate the filter to the women of the village. 

Standing watch on each side of the chief’s door were carved wooden posts topped with small gourds and covered in animal blood and rotting parts. The chief was an animist, or “traditionalist,” as they refer to themselves. They took a deep breath and followed Ray into the circular mud hut. It stank. 

Their eyes slowly adjusted to the windowless room. Another roughly carved post covered in animal parts was behind the chief, who reclined on a eight inch riser of adobe. They impatiently waited for Ray to introduce them and get permission to walk around the village and talk with the women who had been using the filters. 

Moments later, the team was in the sunshine, looking up at the bright sky and breathing deeply. With permission, they entered a compound and talked to a woman of the village. She demonstrated her working water filter, and told them how important clean water was for her young kids.

It takes time for the water to filter because they use gravity, but the filters were all working well.

It is a joy to hear and know that the filters continue to provide a source of clean water, free from parasites and disease, to these people. We pray one day this gift will come with Living Water.