A well in Bangladesh
In July of 2014, after seeing pictures of my friend at a water well in Guatemala, Max asked me about the global water crisis. He was concerned with what he heard and decided that he wanted to start a lemonade stand in front of our home to raise money for kids that didn’t have access to clean water.
I was a tired mom and did my best to discourage his efforts. But his persistence changed my heart and inspired me on a deep level. The “kind of warm, kind of cold” lemonade stand started small but grew successful in our New Zealand neighborhood.
Kids from school came to help - bringing lemons from their trees, making thank you cards, and preparing baked goods. It went on for about a month after school and on the weekends. Max wanted to build a well. With his sales and the help of an online campaign, we raised $2,000 towards that goal. In August of 2015, we abruptly closed the lemonade stand and returned to the United States to be close to family after my dad’s diagnosis.
Five months ago (when we were preparing to move back to New Zealand) Scott Harrison came to our church in Nashville to share about an organization he started in 2006. Take some time to watch this beautifully made video. The Charity Water story cracked my heart wide open, for a million different reasons. I left the service and knew that I wanted to be a part of what they were doing to bring clean, safe drinking water to people in developing countries.
My first job out of college was in the development office at the hospital where Ben went to medical school. I coordinated site visits, planned events and wrote stewardship reports for people who made finical gifts to the University of Texas Medical Branch. Working that job changed the way I think about giving and stewardship. Facilitating opportunities for people to make meaningful, productive gifts, can be an incredibly beautiful thing.
When we sold our house in Nashville we set aside money for a well. There are a lot of wonderful organizations that address the global water crisis. The main reason we decided to fund a well through Charity Water is their unique history of finical accountability and stewardship. One hundred percent of the money donated, goes directly to providing clean water for people in developing countries. All of their administrative overhead is covered with donations from a group of generous benefactors.
As someone that spent time reporting on gifts - I appreciate Charity Water intentionality in regards to financial accountability. As a parent who wants her kids to recognize their privilege and rightfully assume their responsibility as global citizens - I appreciate Charity Water’s thoughtful reporting process. I hope that the updates we receive over the next 21 months will open our eyes to the world.
The well we are sponsoring will be at a school in Bangladesh. It will serve approximately 960 people. We don’t know much about Bangladesh but we have started doing some research. If you have any interesting information to share, please pass it along. We are eager to learn.
After four years, we are back in New Zealand. We are not doing another lemonade stand - but today is my 39th birthday and I am donating it to Charity Water. If you would like to celebrate my birthday with a gift to Charity Water, please visit this site. Happy New Year from the other side of the world.