Field Notes

Water Fosters Freedom in Nairobi's Slums

by: Meredith Maines
July 04, 2013

Everything begins with water. Even freedom. Deep in the slums east of Nairobi you'll find a Living Water pump. Installed last year outside a children's home in Spring Valley, it provides clean water to the 350 children who attend school within the home's walls.

But safe, clean water is helping foster even more than education here. This home is a safe haven, actively rescuing underage Kenyan girls from prostitution and sex-trafficking, and clean water helps make it even safer. One large room of bunk beds sleeps 50 girls rescued from prostitution and abuse—all under 14 years old—and two more rooms are ready and waiting, able to house 80 more girls!

After the borehole was finished last December the occurrence of water-borne disease in the home disappeared completely. Not only that, but city water to the entire community has been cut off for more than two weeks, but in it's absence, the Living Water water point can supply fresh, clean water to the neighborhood—about 1,000 people per day!

Today as we celebrate independence across the nation, we remember we were given freedom to free others from oppression—political, spiritual, emotional, physical. Let's begin with water!