“Which of these bottles of water is dirty?” asks Jose, the health & hygiene teacher in the rural community of San Pablo in Guatemala, while he holds up three different water bottles. One is visibly dirty, brown water that looks like the water from the river. The children immediately eliminate that bottle saying “of course that is dirty water!” Jose stands there with two bottles left – both are crystal clear. He asks the question again, this time the children are not so eager, but are very confused. Visibly, they both look the same and neither are brown or have specks of dirt floating in them.
A few months back when Jose first learned about Healing Waters, he was immediately intrigued and decided to take things into his own hands. His father, who is a health promoter in the area, had a microscope at their house and as Jose told him about Healing Waters, they decided together to look under the microscope and see for themselves which water was safe and which wasn’t. They started with the tap water in their home and immediately saw what in Jose’s words looked like “tiny creatures” crawling around in the water. They were stunned! His father then grabbed the supposedly purified bagged water that he bought to drink each day. As they looked into the microscope this time, they were shocked! They could see bacteria again! His father exclaimed “I will never drink this water again!”
Jose and his father began sharing their findings with their neighbors and friends explaining that the water they thought was safe was making them sick. They urged them to drink the water from the new Healing Waters’ store. Jose then decided to start bringing the microscope to the children’s health & hygiene classes so that they could see for themselves.
So now when Jose asks his class which water is safe to drink, they take both clear bottles of water and put them under the microscope. The children look and see the “tiny animals and bugs” with their own eyes, vowing that they won’t drink that water again! They know that those bugs are bacteria and viruses that make them sick. They then look at the Healing Waters’ water and see that it is perfectly clean!
We love this story for many reasons because it not only shows that simple, effective tools like a microscope can be life-changing, but it also reveals the heart of our health & hygiene educators – using innovation and passion to keep their communities healthy, safe and thriving! Our children’s curriculum, based on Psalm 139 and titled “You are a marvelous creation” is empowering children to know that there is a God who loves them, cares for them, and knows their name!
One of Jose’s favorite things about teaching the curriculum is that it gives him an opportunity to share God’s love with children, something he believes is not a regular occurrence in in his community! Will you consider making a donation today to support the Healing Waters’ Health and Hygiene program? One simple gift can have a lifetime of impact!