News Release

30 Indigenous Communities Will Have Safe Water in Ecuador

The Church of Jesus Christ works with UNICEF Ecuador to improve 10 community water supply systems

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and UNICEF are joining efforts to improve access to safe water in 30 indigenous communities in the rural area of the Chimborazo province in Ecuador. For this purpose, the Church of Jesus Christ made an impactful donation to UNICEF Ecuador. The delivery ceremony took place on Friday, March 15, at the Church’s offices in Quito.

Ecuador has the second-highest rate of chronic child malnutrition in Latin America. Within Ecuador, the Chimborazo province has the highest rateover 35%.

In this province, four out of every 10 households with children under 5 years old consume water contaminated with the E. coli bacteria, stated Luz Ángela Melo, representative of UNICEF Ecuador. She added that the lack of safe water hinders the proper development of children, directly affecting their nutrition, health and ability to learn.

At the ceremony, Melo also expressed her admiration and deep gratitude to the Church of Jesus Christ for supporting UNICEFs mission. She said she was moved by the kindness and generosity of Latter-day Saints.

The donation will be used to improve the operation of 10 community water supply systems. It will also enhance access to safe water services in five community health centers, 12 child development centers and two intercultural centers for the promotion of health and nutrition for children under 3 years old and pregnant women.

As part of the strategy to combat chronic child malnutrition, UNICEF will strengthen local coordination through intersectoral committees so that children under 3 years old and pregnant women can access essential health services.

UNICEF will promote breastfeeding and appropriate feeding and hygiene practices with families and communities. It will also work on preventing and controlling infections and effective management of solid waste, among other things.

Elder Rafael E. Pino, Second Counselor in the Church’s South America Northwest Area Presidency, said the project will bless more than 22,000 children, youth and women in Chimborazo.

Faith without works is dead,” Elder Pino said. “For this reason, the Church of Jesus Christ wants to manifest its faith through actions.

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