There is no water in Foster Hall, St John. This has been the experience of the close-knit, rural community for the past 11 days.
As a result, the residents fear their livelihood has been placed in jeopardy as a result of the extended outages.
But unlike other communities, those living in Foster Hall, St John say the almost two-week disruption came without adequate notice.
“This is two weeks now. No one is coming around and it is frustrating the residents up here. It is frustrating me mentally and physically. Everyday I have to be dipping water and it is putting stress on me. Some households have six and seven different family members and children have to get water. I would hate to think this would continue into the new school term. It needs to be fixed,” said a resident who did not want to be identified.
She told Barbados TODAY her own investigations revealed that reservoirs in the area were low and the ability to pump water had been affected, leaving residents in despair.
“I am praying about it and I am hoping to see water coming from my pipe. This is not fair. I heard on the news places like Boscobelle [St Peter], St Lucy and Shop Hill, St Thomas but nobody is talking about Foster Hall. Are we monsters down here? Nobody has called our name to say what is going on and it is frustrating!” cried the woman.
For Catherine Straughn, a mother of two, assistance from the Barbados Water Authority’s (BWA) roving water tankers has soften the impact of the outage but she believes the BWA as an organisation is failing miserably.
“It is very awful. If the guys [water tankers] come out, they come out after two and I wont see them again until the next day at the same time. It went off last Tuesday and I was the first person to come and make a report,” said Straughn.
“It is really hard because I have two sons who have to go back to school next month, I still have to wash their school clothes. All of the laundry had to be taken to a friend’s house to wash and I still have to pay the water bills.
“They need to remember there are elderly people in the neighbourhood who are bedridden. They need to be placed in a bath to be bathed and it’s really hard,” she added.
A farmer in the area who identified himself as “Prince”, said with pregnant pigs and chickens to look after, he fears shortages could result in a significant loss for his business.
“Normally I have to give my animals water three times a day and they need more than that. I have pigs that are about to have young ones and I am not sure how it could affect me at anytime. It could cost me profits,” he continued.
Meanwhile, Barbados TODAY spoke with Ras Ils who has been a practicing Rastafarian for many years. He said a nearby spring has shielded him from the water problems.
“I just feel a little sorry for my family and my neighbours. My spring dried up in the drought but now that the rain has come back, it has come back so that is very good with the water outages, that I have the spring. I also have tanks there that I store rainwater in. The problem is that people don’t have tanks and are not storing water,” he said.
“I have everything set. I don’t wait until it happens. I prepare for everything. People wait until things happen but this is my way of living so it does not affect me. Everyday I deal with the spring and that is my way of living. If I didn’t have the spring here, I would walk and go by another spring and get my water. I don’t drink pipe water,” he added.
Meanwhile, BWA Marketing Specialist Yvette Harris-Griffith disputed residents claims that they had not been properly informed and said notices were sent out in various sections of the media. She however could not say when water service would be restored. [email protected]