Water: a photo essay

Here’s a look at how we use water around my host family’s compound in Kédougou, Senegal. 
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My neighbor’s well was our primary source of water until it and most other wells in the neighborhood dried up in late February. 

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I’ve been getting my drinking water from this well pump since I arrived in Kédougou. Now that the wells have dried up, most people in the neighborhood get all their water from the well pump as well.


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Hauling water from the well pump, located in a nearby elementary school, is a task no one is exempt from.


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My host uncle fills a plastic teapot, used for hand and feet washing, with the water we store in old oil containers in the cooking room.


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This clay pot holds my host family’s drinking water and keeps it surprisingly cool.



Dishes, usually done by my host sister Woury, are a twice-daily chore.


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My host mom does laundry— a time and labor intensive task— in the little bit of shade safe from the early afternoon sun.


Our usual meals of rice and sauce are cooked over wood charcoal on metal stands.

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Bath time for Mohammed.


Bath time for me.