Mrs. Margarita Maria Treminio Vega tells her story. (Photo courtesy of Blue Planet Run Foundation.)
In the beginning, when I was young, I came from Casas Viejas (a nearby community) and came to La Ceibita to marry. I had to carry water from the well about 3-4 hours each day.
At that time, the well as small and uncovered with a wooden and rock wall to hold the water. We came to get water in our sandals, and we were often contaminating the water with our dirty feet. The women, we carried the water in clay pots, one on our head and another on our waist. One day, carrying back the clay pots full of water down a hill, and one of the young children scared a dog behind me and the dog ran between my legs and it knocked me over. The clay pots shattered, but luckily I only hurt my knees.
I was not the only one to suffer this kind of fall. An older woman slipped and the clay pot fell on her feet. She suffered a great injury and was rushed to the doctor immediately. She needed 11 stitches. All this because of the long and uncomfortable trail that we used to obtain a little contaminated water.
In the rainy season, the roads were so bad that we could hardly get down to get the water and these problems were compounded by the fights for water, pregnancies, having small children with you because there was no one to leave them with, the tiring trip to bring water, the gossipers, the delay in doing our household chores, sometimes leaving us without time to send them to school.
But as time has gone on, some NGOs appeared like El Porvenir that have come to help us and resolve problems. We have improved little by little. CARE helped with the well, digging it, constructing it with a rope pump and chlorine for the water all through our community effort. This was great, but the trail continued to be difficult. We built some latrines with great effoty and some donations of other latrines, and in this way, our health started to improve.
Six years ago, we benefitted from the installation of Electrical Energy thanks to our work with the mayor’s office. The road to the community was improved as well, and our husbands helped us carry the water. When our children were getting bigger, we sent them to help carry water as well. In that time, we stopped using clay pots and started using plastic buckets to carry more water for the bath, washing clothes and all the household chores. In this way, our community has been continually improving. We are happy, thanks to these organizations that have come to help, good and generous people. Because of them, we can live as Christians with more time to improve and we can pray more. You won’t believe this, but I have converted my father and I have taught him to read the Bible. He now talks to the family more, he helps to care for the children and sends them to school. We know we are poor communities that without the help of these nations and organizations that come to Nicaragua, we wouldn’t ever be able to lift ourselves out of misery, but thanks to them, the communities have improved a lot.
We have always dreamed of trying to improve our community more. When we saw a similar project in Casas Viejas and Las Mesas, we searched for ways that took us to Managua since we needed and wanted potable water so much. We wanted to make this dream a reality and we found people with such great hearts that made our dream come true, thanks be to God and thanks to the donors. We feel very thankful since now we no longer have to dedicate 3 hours daily to carry water and now we have free time to dedicate to the children, to our household chores, to pray for tomorrow that we will have less problems. We are in the present and heading to the future, we ask God Almighty that He keeps helping the Nicaraguan people. I hope we can understand and be very careful in the maintenance of this potable water system that El Porvenir has brought us and will be improving our families’ health. This seed we plant today will continue to grow and we can be an example to future generations that they only need to organize themselves and be united to find the solution to their needs.