I traveled with a great team who drilled the water well and taught health and hygiene classes in a village outside La Maquina that sits in the shadow of active volcanos. This village was home to 40 families. Many where subsistence farmers, others worked in the town of La Maquina.
The need for access to clean water is big here. Some people have wells on their land but they are only 10 to 20 feet deep, and in most cases the same depth as their outhouses, causing serious health risks. It was not uncommon for us to see women washing their clothes in a nearby muddy river.
We drilled down to 125' and found a strong aquifer at 105' to 120'! We were able to develop a strong well that was producing 30 gallons a minute! It was really cool to do this work right alongside the villagers and to see how engaged they were in the process! While we drilled part of our team taught health hygiene classes for the children in the mornings and for adults in the afternoon. We were so pleased to have 35 adults out of the 40 families attend on that first day of health and hygiene!
My personal highlight would be the meals that the village prepared for us every day. They were just such beautiful expressions of grace, hospitality and selflessness. Each day we went to a different little home made of rough hewn timber with light coming through the seams and dirt on the floor. We would eat with animals at our feet and children peeking curiously through the walls at the gringos who had invaded their home. The best part was at the end of the meal how everyone would just sit and talk, and rest, and enjoy what had just taken place. I wish I had more of that in my culture.
I am grateful for this experience to rub shoulders with my brothers and sisters in Guatemala and to provide water for the thirsty in the name of Jesus Christ. I am moved by the tears of gratitude from grown men and women as we celebrated the gift of water on the last day and dedicated the well to the glory of God. May many come to know Christ the one who gives living water as a result of this new well!