Thursday, July 9, 2009

The Riley Project

Since we have gotten home from Guatemala, Blake and I have been talking a lot about how to "bring Guatemala home with us." Simply put, we don't want what our kids saw and did in Guatemala to be an annual event. We want them to love and serve year round. We want it to be a part of who they are.

One thing that our family is passionate about is providing clean drinking water to those in need. Here’s why:

Right now, 1.1 billion people on the planet don't have access to clean and safe drinking water. That's one in six of us.

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. Many people in the developing world, usually women and children, walk more than three hours every day to fetch water that is likely to make them sick. Those hours are crucial, preventing many from working or attending school. Additionally, collecting water puts them at greater risk of sexual harassment and assault. Children are especially vulnerable to the consequences of unsafe water. Of the 42,000 deaths that occur every week from unsafe water and a lack of basic sanitation, 90% are children under 5 years old.

(Taken from charity: water website)

We have talked to our kids about these facts. We asked our kids to imagine their lives if they had to walk 3 hours a day, everyday, to get water that can kill them. We asked them to imagine what it would feel like to become very sick simply because they didn’t have access to clean water. And then we made them think about all of the water that we use everyday and take for granted.

Finally, we asked Riley if she would like to do something about it. Would she like to raise money to bring clean water to people in need?

Her answer: YES! Blake and I prayed and talked a lot about exactly how much we wanted Riley to get involved. It didn’t take us long to realize that as God has so extravagantly poured His love and blessings on us, we need to be extravagant in our giving. Put that together with Riley’s extreme excitement to help and we have decided to raise $5,000 to build a well.

We are asking Riley to raise $2,500 and Blake and I will match that and give the other $2,500. Friends, this is so scary and so exhilarating! To be honest, our financial situation is grim right now, but we decided that this would only push us to trust God more.

We are so excited to partner with Riley in this adventure. We are excited to pray together and learn about trusting God together. We are excited to see her serve God in big ways. Riley has put together a plan to raise her $2,500 and she is going to share all about it on her blog! We are giving Riley her own space to document this journey. She will write it all herself. Please click here to join in her journey.


JTP said...

Very cool- I love how you're teaching your kids what it means to really live out God's love- what an inspiration to "new" moms like me. Yeah for Riley!

Bekah said...

We are right behind you Riley and so proud of you. Love you!

Anonymous said...

Crazy, I am so passionate about the water thing right now also. We made a decision to not buy any more bottled water and want to start donating money to orgs that provide good water. I also have an idea for a non-prof on this topic, lets chat, Thrash

jose said...

I commend your project. The first step in fixing a problem is awareness. Your project will show people the scope of the problem in a tangible way. With young people like. you, the future is in good hands.

Torri said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Torri said...

I feel sad that people walk three hours just to get water that will make them sick. I am going to ask my friends and their friends to help you get money for the well. We're going to try our best to earn a lot of money for your project...our Brownie troop meets this week and we'll be talking about you! (Amelia, 7)