A dream come true for the next generation of girls

In Antohobe, Madagascar, the lives of 13-year-old Solo, her mother and her grandmother have all been defined by the lack of access to clean water and a safe place to go to the toilet.

But now, thanks to the support of people like you, things are about to change for Solo and her family – and the future for the entire community is looking brighter.


Solo with her mother and grandmother

Above: Solo with her mother, Norine, and her grandmother, Germaine. Credit: WaterAid/Abbie Trayler-Smith.


When we first met Germaine, Solo’s grandmother, there was one thing she wanted.

“During my lifetime my dear wish is to see this community receive clean, safe water," she told us. "It would be good for the life of the girls in the future.”

She’s lived in the village since she was ten years old and collected water from the same source as Solo when she young.

Now, as the first stages of our work get underway, Germaine’s dream is one step closer to coming true.

And while work begins on the new waterpoint, just 15 metres away from the community, Solo and her brother are also working hard to build their grandmother a new pit latrine – something every household in the community will have by the end of the project.


Solo and her grandmother in Madagascar

Above: Solo with her grandmother in their village in Madagascar. "My grandmother is not able to build her latrine on her own, so I am helping her with my brother. I’ve also asked my Mum and Dad to build a shower as we need it as girls,” Solo told us. Credit: WaterAid/Ernest Randriarimalala.


“Solo is so happy about what is happening in our village,” says Solo’s mum Norine, who has her own hopes for her daughter’s future now she’ll no longer have to walk for water every day.

“She stopped going to school two years ago because she saw the difficulty of the daily chores. She has helped so much, but my wish is to see her continue her studies so she can have a better future,” she says.

Norine, who lost a baby daughter to diarrhoea, also knows the difference clean water and safe toilets will make to her own life.

“Not having to collect water means having more time for farming, for crushing the rice, working in the field or searching for firewood,” she says. “It will be good for life.”


Solo and her mother in Madagascar

Above: Solo and her mother Norine. “I am so excited about the work on the waterpoint that I go there early in the morning every day with my friend to see how it is going," says Solo. Credit: WaterAid/Ernest Randriarimalala.


There’s still time to make double the difference

Until 9 September the UK Government will match every donation to our To be a girl appeal pound for pound – helping us to reach even more girls like Solo, and their families, with the clean water and safe toilets that will transform their lives.

Make a donation and double the difference here.


Top image: Solo and other girls from the village carry jerry cans of dirty water up the hill to their homes. Credit: WaterAid/Abbie Trayler-Smith.