Fadhila’s fresh start with clean water

Growing up with a lack of clean water in Tanzania, 12-year-old Fadhila struggled to stay healthy and in school. In her daily quest for water, Fadhila would often miss class and lose time for study and play. Often what water she did find was contaminated, causing life-threatening, water-related illnesses that kept Fadhila from school. This was a daily reality accepted as normal.

But when she and local community members received Canadians’ gifts of clean water for families, they were able to challenge these inequalities, and together create a new normal for all local children – starting with accessing their basic right to clean water, and the many benefits that flow out with it.

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WATCH Fadhila get a fresh start with clean water!

Today, Fadhila and her family are awash in new possibilities, and Fadhila can finally tap into her full potential!
Fadhila and her smiling mother, father and baby brother in front of their home in Tanzania.

“This water project has helped my family!” beams Fadhila. “Now we drink clean and safe water and I am attending all my classes,” she happily declares, now growing healthy and working towards her dream of becoming a doctor.

Fadhila drinks a glass of water while doing homework.

“By studying she is guaranteeing herself a better life,” says Ester, Fadhila’s proud mother.

This gift renovated a major borehole and helped install a full multi-tap water system that pumps water out near homes and schools – rippling out the benefits of clean water community-wide. It even helped form a school environmental club where Fadhila and her fellow members learn about and promote the importance of health, proper hygiene and sanitation practices and equal rights for every child, regardless of gender.

Fadhila’s teacher, Mwalimu, couldn’t be happier about the changes clean water has brought to the community and school:

  • Two girls stand with a nurse outside the local health facility.

    “This project has helped eliminate water-borne diseases.”

  • Female students outside their new gender-separate latrine, some using the hand-washing station.

    “Now we have working modern latrines and wash facilities and our school environment is clean.”

  • Various livestock drink at the newly installed clean water cattle trough

    “Some people are cultivating vegetables, which is an opportunity to build their health and income.”

  • Fadhila and her classmates raise their hands in class.

    “School attendance has increased to 90% [from 60%]!”


More than just a drop in the bucket: Thanks to generous Canadians like you, who helped Defy Normal through Gifts of Hope, over 283,000 people in Tanzania are drinking in the benefits of clean water for families!

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Now more children and girls like Fadhila can learn, lead, unleash their full potential and thrive – a chance every child should have.

Fadhila and her classmates stand in front of their school, thanking Canadian Gifts of Hope donors.

“I would like to thank the donors from Canada for having the heart to help us get clean water. I say Asante – thank you,” shares Fadhila offering a gratitude-filled cheers to donors on behalf of her family, school and whole community.