Friday, August 28, 2009

Have you gone thirsty today?

Water. The essence of life. I turn on the tap a hundred times a day, never thinking of it. I drink water, I water the plants, I put water in the kiddie pool outside for Donovan to play with, I try to remember to give the cats fresh watwer every once in a while, I wet washcloths to clean Donovan's hands and face after meals, I wash my own hands, I wash clothes, I wash dishes (ok, sometimes).

And it's always there. Pure, clean, crystal clear, drinking water. I never even think twice about it. The few times that our water's been turned off for a few hours because of maintenance, it seems like a horrible thing-- how will we wash our hands? Or flush the toilet??? It seems inconcievable to do without, even for a short period of time.

Yet a billion people worldwide don't have access to safe, clean drinking water. Many have to walk miles every day just to get access to crappy, muddy, bacteria-infested water. Thousands die every day because of this. "Unsafe water and lack of basic sanitation cause 80% of all sickness and disease, and kill more people every year than all forms of violence, including war." How can you live without water?

Yesterday I watched this video. It literally brought tears to my eyes. It is a lovely reminder of what we human beings are capable of when we seek to unite and help, rather than conquer and destroy. We can make a big impact, by simple actions.

My birthday is coming up, in just over 2 weeks. Sure, there are plenty of material things I'd like to recieve. None of which really matter that much. What would be really nice? Building a well somewhere in Africa, for people who truly need it. $20 can give a single person in African with safe, clean drinking water for 20 years. Now that's a wise investment.

I have set up a fundraising site at I am asking you to donate. I'll use their idea, of asking for $29 for my 29th birthday, but feel free to give whatever amount seems just to you. It all matters.

By the way, 100% on all donations go directly to building water wells for people in need, so you know every penny is going to this amazing cause. Over time we should even be able to track exactly where the money has gone, with maps of the wells themselves and everything. Find out more about charity: water here.

Thank you.

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