QuakerChildren and the Bolivian Water Crisis

In 2016, when global warming left the entire city of La Paz without drinking water for weeks, the Friends International Bilingual Center (FIBC) seized the teachable moment to educate children about the crisis and what they could do to help. Through QREC, Friends in the US who learned about the situation, developed lessons on the Bolivian water crisis, the response of young Friends and the value of simplicity, stewardship and global community. First Day School classes in Nashville Tennessee and Madison Wisconsin hosted fundraisers to educate their monthly meetings and support the FIBC children’s program.  Youth in Bolivia and the US connected in a video conversation facilitated by FIBC interpreters.

See below for a lesson plan, presentation and background reports For further information contact Emma Condori-Mamani: centrobilingueamigos7bo@gmail.com.

PDF Icon Download/View the Lesson Plan here.

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More Resources

Quakers in BoliviaQuakers in Bolivia: The Early History of Bolivian Friends takes us back to a century ago when the Quaker community started in Bolivia. Emma Condori Mamani shows the life of the pioneer missionaries in the lands where protestant Christians were hated, mistreated, and sometimes punished. This remarkable history brings the holiness, sacrifice, and dedication of the Quaker missionaries and Bolivian founders alive as inspiration to us in our lives today. Then the author brings our understanding up to contemporary times by describing her personal story of growing up a Friend in Bolivia.

Hands WaterWorld Bank Study Proposes Solutions to Bolivia’s Water Crisis (Holly Davison, 23 March 2017, Columbia University Earth Institute). Bolivia is currently in the midst of the worst drought in twenty-five years following decades of intense water crises, including an infamous “water war” in 2000 in the city of Cochabamba in which tens of thousands of Bolivians protested the privatization of water. read more…

Water From the HeightsWater from the heights, water from the grassroots: The Governance of common dynamics and public services in La Paz-El Alto (Sarah Botton, Agence française de développement, France; Sébastien Hardy, IRD, France; Franck Poupeau, CNRS-University of Arizona). El Alto and La Paz are adjacent sister communities supplied by different water systems, but the inequalities in infrastructure between the two areas lie in their differing respective economic potential. Due to their histories, the two cities present distinct but equally marked forms of socio-spatial segregation. Unsurprisingly, the best equipped neighborhoods are both the oldest and the wealthiest. Meanwhile, the middle classes (middle managers, employees, and members of the intellectual professions) tend to live in the neighborhoods surrounding the historic center. The central area of the city encompasses the business district and the government administrations; it is surrounded by the laderas—neighborhoods set on the mountain slopes extending as far as the high plateau—with their brick or adobe residential buildings. El Alto, on the other hand, has a different but no less rigid layout. It is articulated around La Ceja, the main road junction with La Paz. The city’s inner ring is made up of the oldest and most compact neighborhoods and includes administrative buildings and small artisanal and commercial enterprises. A third ring, less densely urbanized and more extensive, is the product of the endogenous growth of the two cities and of the trend for families to purchase property in less expensive areas on which they can build their own houses. The farther neighborhoods are from the first ring of development, the worse their access to urban services.

Author: Emma Condori-Mamani, Sita Diehl


Publisher: QREC

Age Group: 13 to 15 years, 6 to 8 years, 9 to 12 years

Preparation Time1.00

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TopicsCommunity, Peace, Service, Service Projects, Sharing, Simplicity, Social Action, Stewardship, Truth

An Introduction

The Quaker Religious Education Collaborative (QREC) is an international, cross-branch, grassroots network of Friends sharing a stewardship for lifelong Quaker faith formation through religious education. We formed in April 2014 and now serve more than 300 Friends in our network. We actively engage and support each other across languages and continents. We gather for regional and annual conferences and offer monthly Conversation Circles via an online conferencing platform. 

Steering Circle

We share leadership as part of our collaborative mission, making decisions using the Quaker ‘sense of the meeting’ process, sitting in expectant, worshipful waiting for the emergence of shared truth. Read more…

Working Circles

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Our work  takes place in ‘circles’ or small groups of Friends who labor on a common task, usually meeting by video conference due to the geographic diversity of the membership. Read more…

The Resource Library

Finders Guide, a sampling of the collection

The QREC Resource Library is a place to share lessons and other educational information in support of our work as Quaker religious educators. This library is a forum for curricula, articles, videos and other educational materials on Quaker themes. You will also find principles, policies and procedures to strengthen operation of your child, youth and adult religious education programs.

Children's Education

Adult Education


African Quaker Library

Youth Education

Small Meetings

Young Adult Friends

Biblioteca QREC


Find renewal, companionship, and help for nitty gritty issues in Quaker religious education, all the while opening spaces for Spirit to work and listening together for God’s way forward.

QREC holds an annual conference and retreat. In addition we hold online Conversation Circles and post other religious education events as we learn about them.

Conversation Circles

Online conferences for Quaker religious educators to share about their work. Conversations are scheduled for two sessions per topic to encourage international participation.  Join the conversation…

Other Events

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Religious education events of interest to Quakers from all parts of the world. Please let us know about upcoming online or in-person events happening in your area. See the list of upcoming events…

Love at the Heart

Spiritual Practices


Active Caring

Quaker Family Culture

Finding the Light

Faith at Home

Home is the heart of faith formation for all families. This is especially true for Friends. As an experiential religion, Quakerism is best learned through living in loving community. Indeed, the vast majority of faith formation for our young Friends happens at home in the busy swirl of daily life.

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Submit Resources

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Get Involved

QREC depends on all of us sharing our gifts and skills as religious educators. Here are some of the ways you can get involved…