A Long Walk to Water

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First edition (publ. Clarion Books)

A Long Walk to Water is a short novel by Linda Sue Park.[1] It includes the true story of Salva Dut, a Sudanese Lost Boy, and the fictional story of "Nya," a young village girl. Park is using this book as a platform to support Dut's program, Water For South Sudan.

Salva Dut[edit]

Now an American citizen living in New York, Salva was a young fugitive of the war in Sudan who lived in a refugee camp for ten years. He finally traveled to America, where he got a college education with a bachelor's degree in International Business. Salva Dut was only 11 when he had to take the long and treacherous journey to Ethiopia, where he spent about six years living there. Then Salva led the "Lost Boys of Sudan" to a refuge camp in Kenya. From there only about 3000 people were chosen to go to America, but Salva was one of them. He was relocated to Rochester where he was adopted by a man named Chris and his wife. There he lived, but later decided to go back home to Southern Sudan and started his non-profitable organization that changed his old home, called "Water for Southern Sudan".

Water for South Sudan[edit]

Water for South Sudan is a program created by Dut which drills wells for villages in South Sudan.[2] Previously, families had to trek for hours just to get contaminated water, leaving no time for children to go to school and often infecting villagers with diseases. Creating wells not only gives clean, safe drinking water, it helps with education and economic development.4cs

Endings and importance[edit]

A Long walk to Water ends with Salva Dut meeting his father again. It also ends with Salva coming to Nya's village, and building a well in Nya's village right by her house. Nya and Salva meet at the end of this novel. Nya thanks Salva for bringing the water to her. Nya is a fictional character in this novel. This book teaches the importance of water and family.


  1. ^ Park, Linda Sue (November 15, 2010). A Long Walk to Water. Clarion Books. ISBN 978-0-547-25127-1. 
  2. ^ "Water for South Sudan". Water for South Sudan, Inc. Retrieved 23 October 2011.