Clare's walk of hope highlights water shortages
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An intrepid walker has put on her boots again to highlight the impact of continuing water shortages overseas and raise funds for charity,
For five days this week Clare Hyde is walking six miles with a water carrier to fund raise for Christian Aid and remind people that for many accessing water is an increasingly difficult and daily chore.
Clare, who lives near Longridge, first carried out a series of walks in Christian Aid week in May. She explained she wanted to highlight how it is often women and children who have the vital responsibility of collecting and carrying water for drinking, cooking, irrigating crops and providing water for livestock.
Now she says she is walking to show that the issue has not gone away and that collecting water remains a daily necessity for people in the poorest countries of the world, with climate change bringing additional problems.
She also decided to walk again to boost Christian Aid's work helping communities access water. She said: "Christian Aid only raised half of what they normally do during Christian Aid week because of the lockdown. That means their projects are very severely compromised. I started to think of other ways of fund raising and eventually I thought these problems don't go away. People are still having to walk long distances to collect water every day."
But there are inspiring projects which have heartened Clare. She cited an example from Fashaa Kebele, a village in the Konso region of Ethiopia where, during years of prolonged drought and hardship, Kawite Koyrita would spend up to five hours every day fetching water. Christian Aid, working with its local partners and the community, helped to build a pond which now provides a water source for Kawite and other local residents. Drought resistant seeds and goats and sheep were also provided to help the local women build livelihoods.
Clare, who is carrying a part-filled water container and walking to Longridge and back from her home, said: " I'm doing it for five days, not even with a full container. It's tough and it takes up a large amount of the day."
She said by installing ponds or other water supplies the follow on benefits included women had more time, could create businesses to boost incomes and children could go to school.
To donate to Clare's pre-Christmas fundraiser see https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/clare-hyde3 or the Christian Aid website.