Water Madness…

There are many things that happen here that make ones blood boil.  The latest “thing” is water related.  A number of years ago an expat set up a water system for the local people living in the community below us.  There were no fees involved for the people, just that they needed to maintain it.  Then one day a family living on the stream feeding into the water system cut the pipe, installed their own pipe and started charging the people in the community a monthly fee for water.  The head of the community then went and helpfully arranged that people could pay yearly instead of monthly.  Unfortunately, not everyone saves up the monthly amount so that when it comes time to pay, they don’t have the funds.  And this isn’t because they are foolish with their money, it’s because they don’t have much.  It is infuriating that people can do things like cut pipes and charge people and no one does anything about it, simply because said people own the land the water runs through.  So last month my helper hadn’t paid her yearly fee so her water was cut off.  She then went to the pastor of the local church and asked if she could use his water for washing dishes, clothes, and babies.  He was fine with that.  Then the head of the community went to my helper and said that if she didn’t pay, he was going to go to the pastor of the church and tell him to stop letting her use his water.  Seriously???  My helper is a single mom of 2 young girls living with her younger sister (who just moved from the interior and is going to enter middle school soon) and their elderly widowed mother.  As far as I know, one of the jobs of the church is to help people such as these, but not here apparently….  I helped her out and her water is on again.


About Erica Feunekes

Myself, my husband Hugo and our five kids live and work in Sentani, Papua, with Mission Aviation Fellowship.
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