News & Learning

22 May 2024
Stories | Laos

A Stream of Change: Mrs. Pik’s Water Transformation

After collecting water for consumption and domestic use for more than 70 years, today Mrs. Pik, a 75-year-old widow living in Paklay District, Xayyabouly Province, can remove the heavy bamboo pole and water bucket from her shoulders. During a household visitation, she told East Meets West’s field staff.

“I still remember well, when I was around 5 or 6 years old, I followed my mother to collect water every day from Poon river around 300 meters away from our house. Collecting water was hard work because we had to collect at least 8 buckets, or 80 liters, a day. Sometimes we had to collect water in the morning and very late afternoon and every day we would also take a bath at the river”.

Mrs. Pik explained the feeling, saying, “I am so happy with the water we have now; it is very clean. We just turn on the water tap and everyone can enjoy it. Today, I feel very good because there is no need to worry about collecting water from the river anymore”.

With a heart full of gratitude, Mrs. Pik reflects on the transformation unfolding in Paklay District. Through a partnership with the Department of Water Supply under the Ministry of Public Works and Transport, Lao PDR and the generous support of KOICA and charity: water, Thrive Networks/East Meets West Foundation is bringing clean water to the 12,631 residents of her community. What once seemed like an unattainable dream for Mrs. Pik and others like herself—to see their families grow healthy and happy—is now becoming a tangible reality. As she turns on the tap in her own home, Mrs. Pik knows that every drop of clean water is not just a source of sustenance but a symbol of hope for a brighter future.

See How You Can
Make An Impact

At the heart of our programs are strong partnerships with government, private sector, civil society groups, and local communities. We also implement learning and feedback strategies to strengthen our approaches to promoting gender and socially inclusive WASH practices in our partner communities.