The rusty water pump squeaked with every rise and fall of the handle, worn smooth over the years by thousands of hands. For decades, it had been a faithful supply for the families in this small Jordanian community. Mothers and their children would wait patiently for their turn at the pump, half buried in the scorching hot sand. After their long wait, the cool water was a refreshing reward.
But in recent months, the energetic flow has become less and less. The villagers had been told a year ago that their well was drying up. Today, water sputters out in a tired trickle, not even enough to fill a cup at a time.
Since the beginning of the 2011 conflict in Syria, the small Jordanian community has become home to multitudes of fleeing Syrian families. The strain has been felt keenly by everyone as the area has absorbed the desperate needs of these families. Imagine the suffocating reality of having your water sources suspended. Suddenly the routines of drinking, bathing, cooking, and cleaning become luxuries.
This is becoming the norm for more and more areas. The influx of Syrian refugees into bordering countries has taken a devastating toll on hundreds of small communities. And without water, their situations become full-blown emergencies.
The same is true for Syrian refugee camps. The area surrounding the Zaatari camp in Jordan is extremely arid, and water must be delivered by trucks—more than 1 million gallons of water are distributed each day in the camp.
Cleanliness is becoming more difficult as overcrowding becomes extreme. Our partner tells us preventable sicknesses are spreading. Without enough water, serious diseases are allowed to breed, costing innocent lives.
World Help spearheads an initiative to combat the World Water Crisis by implementing clean water projects through causelife. But the needs among Syrian refugees are complex. With poor existing water tables in many of these desert areas, water must be manually shipped in. Perhaps more than anything, these refugees need access to clean water.
Right now, our partners on the ground are distributing fresh water to families both in the Zaatari refugee camp and those living in border communities. They are supplying as much water as possible with the funding they have, but the need is so great.
Whether you’re making your morning cup of coffee, washing your car, or simply drinking a glass of water, consider those who are thirsty in the Middle East. Our desire is not to make you feel guilty, but to help you grasp the powerful reality that even our smallest efforts will make a significant difference for Syrian refugees.
May our hearts shatter for the orphans and broken families imprisoned in a world where hopelessness is the only reality. May we be the ones to extend a cup of cold water to those grieving beneath a searing desert sun. May we be the ones to respond with the promise that someone sees and cares.