Marcher sur l'eau

Aïssa Maïga
Fri 22 Apr 22 - Fri 29 Apr 22

How the villagers of a small village in Niger get access to their natural wealth.

Marcher sur l’eau tells the story of little village Tatiste in the north of Niger. Tatiste fell victim to climate change which turned the entire neighbourhood into a desert. 14-year-old Houlaye has to walk for kilometres together with other girls to get some water. This daily task prevents them from having normal school days. Many men and women are forced to leave the village because of the drought and have to eat and work somewhere else, which only leaves the children and the elders, some women and the schoolteacher. They do know there is a huge water basin right under their feet, if only they could drill a hole to it. The villagers, together with the schoolteacher and an NGO called Amman Imman (which means ‘water is life’), ask help from the government to supply them with a drill rig. The advantages of a local water well would be endless: the local economy would revive, which leads to the adults staying with their children, who would be able to go to school.

The film was made from 2018 until 2020 and shows us what climate change means for a village in Africa, without falling into big slogans. Director Aïssa Maïga (famous French actress whose parents come from the Sahel area) tells the story through the eyes of young Houlaye. Aïssa Maïga pays attention, almost tenderly, to the daily lives of the villagers. We also see the power of the women who stay behind and how they have to cope and organise. The images of the desert are breathtakingly beautiful, sometimes even too beautiful to describe the tragedy unfolding.

Aïssa Maïga
90 min
France, Belgium

A simple story that says it all.