Field Note #3: Antia & Rose: The Dominican Republic
For a grandmother, her granddaughters health is the greatest gift.
In the Dominican Republic, tourist resorts and beautiful beaches often hide from the public eye the struggles of it’s citizens. Hand-in-hand with poverty goes the lack of clean drinking water, and this leads to widespread waterborne illness, particularly in children. To combat this, Wine To Water creates and distributes ceramic water filters to the Dominican people from our factory on the island.
Antia is one of the people who received one of these ceramic water filters. Antia lives in a small village called Manantial in the region of Gurabo. Manantial, a poor community, has seen how grave the effects of unsanitary water can truly be.
Manantial’s main water source is a nearby river, which is constantly being polluted by trash and sewage. Since many of Manantial’s citizens cannot afford to buy the five-gallon jugs of water that the government sells, they are left drinking, bathing, and washing dishes in water gathered from the polluted river.
Drinking unsanitary water can make anyone sick, but poses the biggest danger to young children. For children under five, whose bodies are not yet strong enough to fight off the diarrheal disease that comes from drinking polluted water, it can be life-threatening. So when Antia’s granddaughter, Rose, became sick, it was a frightening, grave time for Antia and her family.
Five-year-old Rose grew very ill, and eventually had to be taken to the hospital after coming down with diarrheal disease. Luckily Rose recovered; however, this is not always the case. Most of the children living in Manantial are affected by the water in some, whether it’s from diarrheal disease or from sores that develop on their faces and hands.
When Antia and the people of her community received water filters, they were given not only a filter, but the assurance that their children and grandchildren would no longer suffer from waterborne illnesses.
Now, Antia and her family don’t have to worry about the water Rose drinks making her sick. “I know that it’s going to be something very great,” says Antia, “because the water is going to be filtered, and be free of insects and parasites.”
-Wine To Water