Local Children Work to Provide Safe Water to African Peers

When Toni Daee’s grandchildren learned that kids their own age in Africa didn’t have clean drinking water, it worried them so much, they told their grandmother they wanted to help.

This weekend, the kids are hosting a garage sale and all of the proceeds will go towards helping those in need.

“They actually approached me, we’re using their ideas and all the money will go towards digging wells (boreholes) in Africa,” said Daee. “It’s just incredible to see these kids so full of hope and wanting to make a difference.

For 13-year-old Raquel, lessons at church are being put to test with her involvement in the project. Even at a young age, she understands the importance of giving to others.

“I would want them to do the same for me,” she said. “In my church at First Baptist, we have been talking about how much God has given us and how he did great things and we can do even greater and that made me think this is a really great thing to do for the kids.”

Raquel said her young age was not a barrier in helping the young kids a world away.

“I think we can (do it) – there’s nothing holding us back,” she said. “Basically, it’s like you reap what you sow.

“I feel if I can be a blessing for these kids, God will bless me.”

Mariah, 7 also learned the lesson of helping others at church.

“I found out they were drinking dirty water so I wanted to help give them clean water,” she said. “It’s very nice (to get involved) and it’s what God says to do.”

Angie Simon is director of development and communications for Hope 4 Kids, the organization that is committed to building wells for 51 African villages. Simon said the project would not only provide water for the villages, but help prevent the spread of diseases as well.

“Dysentery, next to Malaria and Measles is the number three killer in East Africa,” she said. “Women will ride their bikes up to six hours to Lake Victoria for polluted water that they believe to be clean.

“They will clear sewage from the top of the water and scoop from down below. For $8,500, we can dig a well that will serve up to seven villages of up to 3,500 people.”

For 4-year-old Joslyn, it was something she wanted to do, “to get them a well so they don’t have dirty water.”

“It is good to help other people,” said the pre-school girl.

By Sherry Mitchell
Henersonville Star News