Women carry an unfair burden when there is no safe water, constant physical danger and strain while fetching water over long distances, coping with chronic water-borne illness, missing school, and spending many days caring for sick family members. When safe water is nearby, we see women prosper.


Aisha, a slender Burkinabe woman in her mid-20s, sits on a stool outside a tiny, dark room she has rented in the rural town Bobo-Dioulasso. She patiently wraps long strips of plastic from old sacks around straw bundles, skillfully binding the colorfully wrapped straw into a wide serving tray for “Banfora” a traditional fried pastry with pineapple originally from the region of Banfora. She is surrounded by evidence of her handiwork — brightly colored, elegantly shaped baskets, traditional serving trays, and low woven serving tables. She has clearly mastered her craft.

Aisha is also enrolled in university, which means she is intelligent and has persevered against many odds. She dreams of becoming a veterinarian, and she is well on her way to making that dream a reality.

Aisha grew up in a village without a water well of clean water. As young as four years old, she — like many of the girls in her town – spent many hours every day with large clay pots strapped to her back, collecting water from a contaminated river. Fortunately, when she was ten years old the town installed a water system with hand pumps distributed every few kilometers. That single event change allowed Aisha’s opportunities to blossom. She was able to attend primary school, then high school, and was eventually accepted into the animal health program at the local university.

Today, Aisha’s only concern is to finish her studies. She lifts the lid of one of her enormous baskets to reveal a pile of well-worn school books.

“See, I am making these things to pay for this room and college. I am fortunate to have learned an income-producing trade from my mother. I sell my goods in the market, and often people come to me with orders for wedding gifts. Right now I have no extra money to save. If I can cover all my expenses, I consider that a success.”

Even though she works from long hours in extremely humble conditions, Aisha is thankful for her circumstances. “First, I am generating income for my life. I do not have to depend on others. Second, I am studying. It is another means of life for my future.”

Aisha acknowledges that her ability to support herself and study for a better future depends on access to clean water. “I am doing both of these things because I have time,” She says. “If I were fetching water, I could not attend school, let alone help myself with this income.”

Little by little, clean water plus ambition and hard work are bringing Aisha closer to her dream of becoming a veterinarian.

We still believe…


We believe people, not water, can change everything! When you sponsor Well Drilling Project in Burkina Faso, Africa you’ll unlock the potential of an entire community!