Persistence Pays Off

February 27, 2015

by Ken Morrill, WASH (Water, Sanitation, and Hygiene) Project Manager in El Salvador

A Samaritan’s Purse project is bringing clean water to remote communities in El Salvador—thanks in part to locals who patiently persevere to make it happen.

Almost four years ago in November 2011, Samaritan’s Purse hosted our first eyeglass clinic in El Salvador.  During the clinic days in Tihuilocoy (where we were also installing BioSand Water Filters at the time), a woman named Margot approached me and asked if her community—Colonia San Jose—could have filters too, since their water was very bad.

We had already committed to a number of other communities, and I didn’t know when we might be able to bring filters to Colonia San Jose. Nevertheless, I took her phone number, and gave her mine.

Margot called me like clockwork every month! Over a year later, our team was finally able to meet with her to discuss bringing BioSand Water Filters to her village.

We met at her house, and she showed us not only how her community, but also several others were in need of filters. We started our work that summer, and last spring Margot’s own filter was installed in her home.

It was wonderful working in Colonia San Jose. Months later, the community has set the standard for excellent filter use, implementation of tippy taps (which are simple hand-washing stations), and more.

Margot in particular went above and beyond. Not only did she host all of our filter-related training sessions, but she also hosted our evangelistic movie nights and held our discipleship classes in her home. In the photo, Margot is receiving her graduation certificate from our discipleship class.

Margot’s persistence not only provided filters for her community, but brought our team into contact with six other communities in which we installed more than 500 filters.