One of the things that we have learned from first-hand experience while working to provide water in Burkina Faso, West Africa are some of the difficulties that occur between people of different belief.
It was a bit of a surprise when some of the Engage Burkina Team pulled into a village with a team of leaders who have provided resources for wells (and hope to provide more) and showed them a well we had dug...right next to another well.
Our primary desire is to make clean water accessible to those that have none. But here was our well, next to another one. Initially, we were a little embarrassed. Why did the Burkinabe leaders we had entrusted with making decisions on where wells would be placed put one here?
We have learned there are different reasons for this.
In a part of the world where survival is limited by access to clean water, some deny this necessity to others. Amazing isn't it? A village chief may be influenced by a village witch doctor to not share water with specific groups of people. We have seen this be especially true among villages where there are Christians because they worship differently than the witch doctor, and don't comply with their schemes.
Several of the villages we work in have had wells go dry. But thanks to the resources provided by those that give to Engage Burkina the wells that we have put in continue to provide clean water. When that happens we don't deny clean water to anyone, even if you have denied it to us.