For the run-up to World Water Day, Katherine Straus shares updates from each of DIGDEEP’s active field sites. Katherine is Director for People and Places.
SMITH LAKE, NM
We’ve been trying for months to drill this fact into your brain: 13% of American Indians do not have access to clean water. The water crisis is closer to home than you think.
DIGDEEP’s newest field site is only 10 hours form LA - in Smith Lake, New Mexico. We’re piloting a project in Smith Lake to improve trucked water delivery to rural homes. Water delivery gaps are a huge, complicated problem, and water trucks are only a first (urgently needed) step.
Since planning started last Fall, we’ve spent a lot of time visiting local Navajo residents and hearing their stories. We’ve met people like Mrs. Johnston, a tribal elder who has spent most of her life walking 3-5 miles to collect water from a local pond. She and her family now receive about 400 gallons of water a month by truck. Without a local fill station, however, it’s not enough water to meet the basic needs of her 13-member household!
DIGDEEP is helping our partners in Smith Lake by constructing a new well in a centralized location, and improving home water delivery and storage. Factors such as uranium contamination and water depth (over 2000 ft!) have made the planning period a long one. But this Spring, we’re moving out of the planning stage and into construction!
If you’re interested in defending the right to clean water in the US – we could use your help fundraising! Donate or create your own fundraising campaign here!
This is part of a series for World Water Day celebrating our international water access projects. Help DIGDEEP defend your right to water this March 22nd by visiting digdeepwater.org