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Changing Their Story with Clean Water

I remember standing in a small house on a hillside in Haiti. The sun was beating down, the lush dark greenery surrounded us, it was a simple reminder of God’s beautiful display and splendor.

Families were walking home from work, kids were running and laughing and life was generally good.

But then something unique happened; I was minutes away from learning about the harsh reality that (close to one billion) people face daily- simple access to clean water, or for many, just access to ANY water source at all is unavailable.

The madam, or the mom, of the house asked the kids if they could bring her some water. A few moments later, the kids came back.. with no water.

Tension immediately filled the house… the kids forgot to get water that morning before school. (It’s true, in developing countries, many kids walks hours first thing in the morning, just to get water for their family for the day) So, the family had no water. To top it off, darkness was close, as the day was nearing an end.

This was a dire situation.

For one night, this family had no water to drink, no water to cook and no water to bathe.

So, the kids did what most Haitian kids do — they picked up five-gallon buckets, ran down the hillside off into the distance, and fetched some water.

They quickly disappeared into the depths of the crevasses of the mountain side. Time was of the essence as the darkness chased them… below that crevasse, was a creek. This creek, six-to-eight months out of the year, is the only access to water this community has.

No running water through pipes, no working water wells, no nearby lakes… just a creek that dries up many months of the year during the dry season.

This is just a typical story that plays out all throughout the developing world. I’ve personally seen it over and over. I hate that almost one billion people have to deal with this basic issue each day!

The world has a water crisis. I’ve personally seen families destroyed because of cholera, a deadly disease caused by lack of clean water. The stench of death was evident as body-bags lay on the ground… I hugged the kids who had lost their parents. All these parents needed was water to rehydrate their bodies, and they would still be alive. But they did not have access to water. WATER.  How….can…..this…be?

Clean water brings life, hope, safety, and development.

This is how the H.E.L.P. tribe is changing the story of many who lack access to clean water:

Africa:

Our 110 orphans in Zimbabwe were walking daily to get water, until our friends at Austin New Church held a Garage Sale for Orphans, or GS40, party in 2010 and raised $12,000. Those funds drilled a well, and each day, our 110 kids, plus their community, now have access to clean water.

All because many folks in Austin decided to get rid of their excess.

Haiti:

Our 30 orphans in Haiti used to drink dirty water. They would get worms, become sick and miss school. Until, our friends at Remedy Church threw a GS40 party and donated the funds to drill a clean water well. Now, they have access to clean water – for the first time in their young lives (pictured above).

All because many folks in Maryland decided to get rid of their excess.

Just last week, another well was repaired in Kenscoff, Haiti. Hundreds of people can now get access to clean water in this community.

Last month, many of you from the HELP tribe donated money to help drill a well in Ferrier, Haiti.  Hundreds, if not thousands of people, now have access to clean water, daily!

But we still have close to 1 billion people globally who do not.

**Development and Aid combo. **

Bringing clean water to the masses is vital to seeing communities restored. In these communities where we bring clean water, we’re also creating “water committees.” The locals will be involved in ensuring that these wells:

1) Work properly.
2) Are also funded through the local community, not just outside aid.

We’re asking these communities to create a water fund, so when the wells break, they can repair them ASAP.

Access to clean water is one of the foremost ways that we can help one community end extreme poverty. Dirty water causes so many negative issues, and clean water solves so many of those issues.

ACTION Steps

1) Donate to our clean water fund.

2) Host a GS4O, and use the proceeds to bring clean water to Haiti or Africa.
3) Donate to our Haiti water initiative.
4.) Learn more about the water crisis.

Key Water Stats

  • 900 million people worldwide lack access to clean water
  • 2.6 billion people do not have a safe place to go to the toilet
  • Every day 4,000 children die from water-related diseases
  • Safe water supplies and sanitation not only save lives, they free up people’s time for work and school so that communities can take their first steps out of poverty

- Water Aid America

2 Responses

  • Natanael
    Apr 12, 2012

    these numbers are very alarming, how is it that so many people lack clean water?

    Natanael Apr 12, 2012
    Reply

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