Friday, October 15, 2010

Thirsty? Join the club

No lectionary thoughts today, because I have something else important to share with all of you.  Some of you may know that Traci and I are running the Philadelphia Marathon on November 21st.
We are running it as part of Team Living Water International.  LVI is an organization that works to drill wells in (mostly) rural areas of the world without access to clean water.
In training for the marathon I ran 14 miles today.  Let me tell you, that is a long way to run.  The crazy thing is many people (most often women and children) have to travel farther than that each day to reach any water source and that water they get once there is often dirty and infested with disease.
Simply put clean water = life, without access to clean water nothing else matters.
I could go on (and on) about why this is important, but I thought I would simply share some facts from Living Water International's website
Pleas take a look at some of the facts and scroll down to the bottom to find out how together we can help provide a cup of cool water to thirsty children, families and others in need around the world

• 884 million people in the world do not have access to safe water. This is roughly one in eight of the world’s population. (WHO-UNICEF)
• 1.8 million children die every year as a result of diseases caused by unclean water and poor sanitation. This amounts to around 5000 deaths a day. (UNDP)
• LWI projects providing safe water and hygiene education at an average cost of twenty dollars per person, for a generation. (LWI)
• The simple act of washing hands with soap and clean water can reduce diarrheal diseases by over 40%. (UNICEF)
• Providing water and hygiene education reduces the number of deaths caused by diarrhoeal diseases by an average of 65%. (WHO)
• Water-related disease is the second biggest killer of children worldwide, after acute respiratory infections like tuberculosis. (UNDP)
• The weight of water that women in Africa and Asia carry on their heads is commonly 40 pounds, the same as the average airport luggage allowance. (UNDP)
• Water and sanitation infrastructure helps people take the first essential step out of the cycle of poverty and disease.
• At any given time, half the population of the developing world is suffering from one or more of the main diseases associated with inadequate provision of water and sanitation. (UNDP)
• At any one time, half of the developing world’s hospital beds are occupied by patients suffering from water-related diseases. (UN)
• Around 90% of incidences of water-related diseases are due to unsafe water supply, sanitation and hygiene and is mostly concentrated on children in developing countries. (WHO)
• Intestinal worms infect about 10% of the population of the developing world. Intestinal parasitic infections can lead to malnutrition, anaemia and stunted growth. (WHO)
• The average North American uses 400 liters a day. European uses 200 liters. (UNDP)
• The average person in the developing world uses 10 liters of water every day for their drinking, washing and cooking. (Water Supply and Sanitation Collaborative Council (WSSCC))
• On current trends over the next 20 years humans will use 40% more water than they do now. (UN Environment Programme (UNEP)
• Agriculture accounts for over 80% of the world’s water consumption. (UN Environment Programme (UNEP)
• 443 million school days are lost each year due to water-related diseases. (UNDP)
• 11% more girls attend school when sanitation is available. (DFID)
• 40 billion working hours are spent carrying water each year in Africa. (Cosgrove and Rijsberman 1998)
• Households in rural Africa spend an average of 26% of their time fetching water
If you are interested in making a difference in the water crisis there are many ways you can help.  You can work directly with organizations like LVI ( or Charity Water (  or others.  
We would like you to consider sponsoring Traci and I as we run in the Philadelphia Marathon. We have set a goal of $2,600 - which is $50 a mile for each of us.  
To donate and/or for more information please check out our secure sponsor page:
Thanks for you time and consideration!  

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