Movers & Shakers Interesting People

Kenyan 4-year-old thirsts for life, adventure

Nkaitole, possibly the youngest person to have created a bucket list, stars in emotional video campaign about the importance of safe drinking water

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People who live in nice places tend to take what they have for granted. One such item is safe drinking water. Not everybody has access to potable water, and without it children often die at a young age.

In the Kenyan village of Amoboseli, for example, one in five children dies before turning 5 because of unsafe drinking water.

Nkaitole resides there. He’s 4, a precarious age.

So as part of a Water is Life campaign to raise awareness, Nkaitole became perhaps the youngest person on the planet to have created a “bucket list” of things he’d like to do before he dies.

“I’m going on an adventure,” he says of his first trip outside of his village. “Traveling across Kenya … doing all the things I’ve always wanted to do.”

The emotional footage shows Nkaitole (pronounced Guitolie) checking off items on the list, obviously unaware that the pretense for this project is to drive home the point that the boy—and others like him—might not live to see his 5-year-old birthday.

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Images are video screen grabs

“I flew like a bird,” he said of his first airplane flight.

He raced against an elite sprinter, soared in a hot-air balloon, drove a race car, saw the ocean for the first time, and even ran along the beach.

Nkaitole also received his first kiss from a girl. Bucket list material, for sure, but since he’s only 4 we assume that was somebody else’s idea. (The child seemed to enjoy the moment, however.)

The footage is sure to stir emotions, and producers hope the video’s powerful message will inspire caring people to donate to their effort to ensure that kids like Nkaitole enjoy access to safe water—so they can postpone formulating bucket lists at least until they become adults.

For now, however, Nkaitole remains ambitious about reaching adulthood.

“One day I will be a Maasai warrior,” he says.

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