Family of twelve survive on four buckets of water a day
A mother-of-three from Samusu carries more than three buckets of water from the village spring to her home each day just so she can prepare food for her family.
Makerita Tolu's home is located near the main road on the south west of Upolu Island.
The 47-year-old lives with her husband, children, and grandchildren in a Samoan traditional house with a concrete floor, iron roofing supported with wood.
“Water is a necessity in life that our family is not fortunate to have access to,” she said.
Mrs. Tolu said that her family has struggled for more than a year without water accessibility.
“Our village faces a difficulty of having access to water supply within our homes. We fetch water from those who live a great distant from us who have water supply and we are thankful that they do not charge us and it is out of their generosity that has allowed us to live by getting water from them," she said.
“There were water tanks freely donated to some families but the priority was for the elderly and we were not fortunate to receive one.
“As a mother, my duties are to racing my children and part of that responsibility requires me to walk a great distance every morning and evening to fetch buckets of water.”
She added that her children also assist her with getting water.
“In terms of washing our dishes we use a bucket that has rainwater collected in it," she said.
“Our family of 12 walk to the village’s spring so we can shower but we must do so around 3pm in the afternoon because it is not only crowded but we cannot have the children walk home in the dark.
“The toilet facility is not in good condition because we don’t have a source of water but we pour water to flush it.”
She also told the Village Voice team that her husband and son are the bread winners in the family"
“I am truly grateful for my husband and son for their hard work in getting financial support which priority is mainly on food supplies.
“Despite having two people employed the income cannot cover so many needs and wants that our family has.”
As Samoa faces a measles epidemic, the family of Mrs. Tolu is thankful that no one has contracted the virus.
“Our country is facing a horrific crisis with so many lives lost to the epidemic, we acknowledge God’s protection upon our family that no one got the measles because it would heartbreaking if any of our infants were claimed by the virus.
If you would like to assist the family of Mrs. Tolu please contact the number: 7296482.