Clean drinking water in Ethiopia

Funding required: $63,060

This project will help: 6,000 children and their families

Estimated completion date: April 2022

Country: Ethiopia

Executive summary

Across Ethiopia, diarrhea is the leading cause of death for children under age 5—representing the loss of life of more than 70,000 little ones each year. The root cause is simple: a lack of clean water for drinking and hand washing.

Without fresh water sources in town, the burden typically falls on children—especially girls—to walk long distances and collect unsafe river water for their families’ daily needs. Many Compassion centres have no latrines or simple pit latrines, and children have no water to wash their hands after practising open defecation or going to the bathroom. Recurring illness and disease outbreaks are painful consequences, with school attendance, academic performance and participation in the Compassion Child Development Program all suffering as a result.

Compassion Ethiopia has identified water and sanitation hygiene (WASH) as a top priority and is committed to resolving the disparity by building sustainable water facilities for 24 selected frontline church partners serving 6,000 boys and girls. With your support, Compassion’s plan is to install water tanks, pumps and pipelines so children can enjoy the life-giving benefits of clean water for drinking and washing. Community water access points at the church will also allow families to collect water for cooking and cleaning.

With access to safe water, children’s physical health will improve by reducing the risk of communicable diseases through safe hand washing. This intervention will improve the hygiene and sanitation for thousands of children and their families, and in turn, reallocate funding that is currently being spent on purchasing clean water and covering medical bills. Children will have the freedom to attend school and church instead of spending their days collecting water from contaminated rivers. They will be able to focus on their education, gaining new skills and developing relationships with caring Christian adults—all of which contribute to their holistic development as they grow into confident adults and fulfill their God-given potential.

Did you know?

In Ethiopia, inadequate water supply and sanitation services contribute to 60 to 80 per cent of all infectious diseases. Supplying clean water facilities will greatly reduce the overwhelming rates of diarrhea and stunting.



Compassion’s head office in Ethiopia conducted a needs assessment across 279 frontline church partners to identify the biggest hindrances to serving vulnerable children and releasing them from poverty in Jesus’ name. Here is what they discovered:

  • 34 per cent of the 279 Compassion centres have no latrine facilities
  • 56 per cent of children attending the program do not practise hand washing after defecation
  • 18 per cent of churches have no access to potable water

Compassion is committed to serving children made vulnerable by poverty—and water is one of their greatest needs. Your investment in clean water can provide vital care to children and their families through the precious gift of safe water.

The need

Compassion Ethiopia is passionate about meeting the critical needs of children living in poverty so they can grow up healthy, strong and loved. The lives of these precious boys and girls matter to God. With your help, 24 frontline church partners will be equipped with water tanks and pumps so they can access clean water. Children and caregivers will also receive training on hygiene practices to keep them healthy. Children will no longer have to travel long distances searching for water each day. Compassion centres will be able to use their funds on programming rather than on purchasing drinking water and treating illnesses, and they will be able to deliver timely meals and snacks to children. By meeting their basic human need for clean water, you will give these children the gift of a healthy childhood and a promising future.

What your gift will do

Your generous gift will provide 24 frontline church partners—serving 6,000 children in Ethiopia—with the labour and supplies to build clean drinking water facilities:

  • Excavation and earth work
    • Clearing and removal of topsoil
    • Excavation for footings< /li>
  • Concrete work
    • Footing pads with reinforced concrete
    • Foundation construction
    • Columns, beams and bars
  • Super structure
    • Concrete reinforcement
    • Steel reinforcement
  • Finishing
    • Three coats of plastering in cement mortar
    • Installation of external ladder
    • Installation of 3,000-litre and 1,000-litre roto water tanks, pumps and pipeline fittings


  • Local contribution: US$3,631.78
  • Handling of funds: CIV program specialists, in collaboration with Compassion Ethiopia, will oversee the budget and purchase plans for water tanks, pumps and pipeline installation at each of the 24 locations.
  • Follow-up: Compassion centre staff and church leaders will monitor the water facilities to ensure proper usage and maintenance so families can benefit from the clean water for years to come.

No less than 80 per cent of your donation will be used for program activities and a maximum of 20 per cent for fundraising and administration. If we exceed our funding goal for the initiative shown, the remaining funds will be used to fund other programs where the need is greatest.