I Alone Cannot Change the World

I alone cannot change the world, but I can cast a stone across the water to create many ripples. – Mother Teresa

Imagine

In developing countries like Niger, women are victims of forced marriage, violence, and sex trafficking. The burden placed on women is enormous. Everyday, mothers must walk miles just to give their children something to drink, massive amounts of effort expended on such a basic human necessity when school books remain untouched and pockets remain empty.

Fact of the Week

Fact: People suffering from diseases related to poor water, sanitation, and hygiene occupy half of all the hospital beds in the developing world.

How to Save an African Starfish

Sub-Saharan Africa has the largest number of water-stressed countries of any region on that continent. Niger is the second poorest country in the world. What is the main reason why 1 in 7 infants and children die in rural Niger before the age of 5? Drinking contaminated water. So the bottom line is…. safe water is key, because safe water saves lives.

Wells Bring Hope is saving lives in Niger by drilling wells to bring safe water and sanitation to rural villages. They rely on people like you and me to raise money to help them do it. Once lives are saved by providing safe, clean water to villages, then the people of Niger can actually start LIVING!!

Women and girls walk 4-6 miles a day to get water and with all of their time taken up by this task, girls can’t go to school. When a well is drilled, girls are able to go to school, and women can spend their new found time earning an income through microloans provided by Wells Bring Hope…..and mothers can stop living in constant fear that contaminated water is going to kill their children.

So look in the mirror and ask yourself, “Do I want to save some lives today?” If the answer is “yes”, then you can make it happen through Wells Bring Hope.

What are we waiting for?

We have the ability to provide clean water for every man, woman and child on the Earth. What has been lacking is the collective will to accomplish this. What are we waiting for? This is the commitment we need to make to the world, now. – Jean-Michel Cousteau

The Power of Microfinance

Give a man a fish, he’ll eat for a day. Give a woman a microcredit, she, her husband, her children, and her extended family will eat for a lifetime. – Bono

Visiting the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation Visitor Center

A few weeks ago, I had the opportunity to visit the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation Visitor Center in Seattle. The center opened in February of this year, and showcases the innovative work that the foundation’s partners are doing to address difficult challenges in the developing world in health and poverty alleviation, and in the United States through education. The foundation is guided by the belief that all lives have equal value, and that every person deserves the chance to live a healthy, productive life.

Service is Joy

I slept and I dreamed that life is all joy. I woke and I saw that life is all service. I served and I saw that service is joy.

A Model of Hope and Perseverance from Niger

Dominated by the vast expanse of the Sahara, Niger, the second poorest country in the world, is 80% desert. It is also landlocked, plagued by near-constant drought, and at the epicenter of the world water crisis. 68% of Nigeriens lack access to clean water, 87% lack adequate sanitation, fewer than 30% of adults are literate. There is not a single rowboat or scull in the entire country. Basically, it is the last place on earth that you would expect to produce a hero of Olympic rowing. Yet this week, one of the biggest stories to come out of the Games in London is that of Hamadou Dijbo Issaka, a gardener from Niamey, Niger’s capital, who is competing in the Olympics as the sole member of his nation’s rowing team.

Wordy Wednesday

“A woman is the full circle. Within her is the power to create, nurture, and transform.” – Diane Mariechild