Photo of the Day: A Long Walk for a Drink of Water

Drought pushes East African women and girls further and further from home.

From a distance, it may appear as if these Kenyan women and children are making a game of dragging or rolling water containers toward home. (Photo: Ho New/Reuters)
Allan MacDonell is TakePart’s News + Opinion editor, with a focus on social justice.

In many parts of the world, where obtaining a glass of drinkable water is an arduous and time-consuming chore, the job of fetching that precious commodity falls largely to women and girls. It's common for a girl of middle-school age to spend three to four hours of her day—generally during the time school would be in session—traveling to a distant well or spigot to secure the family's daily water supply.

Years of drought have dried up huge swathes of arable land and hope across east Africa. Girls and women are walking further to carry out their crucial chore, exposed to worsening manmade and natural dangers, with no guarantee that the distant taps will not be dry. Securing and transporting water is now a life-or-death challenge, with death increasingly the winner.

To give the water fetchers—and life—an edge, support efforts of the Water Aid International, UNICEF, 10X10 Act or Lifewater International.

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