A Day in the Life of Maya

by Sonja Kraft

I met Maya at the Purnaa office a few months ago and immediately connected with her. She was one of the first employees to come up and talk to me, the new Purnaa volunteer. She was so friendly and easy to befriend despite the language barriers.

Before working at Purnaa, Maya worked for a construction company, hauling heavy loads of bricks on her back. Today she enjoys working at Purnaa because of the friendships she has made and the dignity she is shown there.

A few weeks ago, I had the privilege to go to Maya’s home and learn more about her life.She was so welcoming to me and my husband, who also came along. I wasn’t quite sure what to expect, but I was excited.Upon our arrival, the smile on Maya’s face was from ear to ear. She couldn’t wait to show us what her life is like.

Maya has been married and living in the same house for five years. It is a quaint, one bedroom home, with a bathroom outside of the home. Even with its small size, Maya has turned it into an inviting home. The two-burner stove and kitchen supplies are on one side of the room, while the dresser and bookshelves (which her husband made himself) are on the other, with the bed at the back. It was a very cozy home. Their home is connected to her in-laws store, so they get to see his family very often.

Maya has one son who is three years old. His name is Manjil. He really enjoys playing and running around with his cousins. Maya loves to spend as much time as she can with her son. Their favorite activity to do together is play and splash around in the water. It took him a little while to warm up to me, but by the end of our trip he was smiling and posing for pictures.

I got to experience what Maya’s daily life looks like. She starts her day at 6 am with getting herself dressed and ready. Once she has gotten herself ready, she then walks about 200 yards to get water for her and her family. She has a gold jug that she carries with her every day to get water from the local tap. Usually she is met there by friends who are also getting water, doing dishes, or washing laundry. This is the only source of water for Maya and her neighborhood.