The school Eskola Basic Filial Golgota has 211 students, 99 girls and 112 boys. It sits on a plateau, offering stunning views of the beaches and crystal-clear waters of the ocean in Baucau Municipality, east of the capital Dili. However, for close to a decade since it opened, the school had difficulties accessing water.
Students and teachers had to use their lunch break to walk to a communal water pipeline a kilometer away, and then carry heavy buckets of water along the rocky paths back to the school. The water was used for handwashing, cleaning the school, and even to stop the dust from blowing around during the dry season.
“It is a tough choice, as staff, children and I used almost the entire break to fetch water instead of giving children time to play. But there was no choice, as water was critical to help with handwashing, sanitation and cleanliness, and to keep children safe from disease,” says Ana Floriana dos Santos Marques, the Principal of EBF Golgota.