I was compensated by World Vision for my time in writing this post. All opinions are my own.
One of the challenges that I face as a parent with young kids and a busy schedule is that there’s just not a lot of time to volunteer or exercise. I don’t know about you, but these 2 activities seem to get downgraded on the priority list so quickly. Pre-kids it was pretty easy to get involved in organizations I love and we also had plenty of time to exercise, specifically, run road races. Now, there’s just not enough time or energy to do it all, but I KNOW these are very important pillars of well-being. Plus, I just enjoy them.
Please tell me I am not alone.
Since I really do love global missions, I want to remain a supportive and active member of the global population, helping and participating as I can. This year I have had the pleasure of partnering with World Vision, a humanitarian organization that helps people all over the world. They have made it easy for me (and our whole family) to participate as a global citizen, something that I desire but feels out of reach at this time of life.
- We started sponsoring a little boy from South Africa back in December. I picked him because I have been to South Africa and he is almost exactly the same age as my youngest son. It was just perfect. We have his pictures around the house, talk about him regularly and pray for him almost daily. My boys are starting to get the idea.
The boys had to get Mesuli, our WV child, just right for the picture.
- I am going to run in the Global 6K for Water to help bring awareness to the global health issue of clean, safe water. While I wish I could travel to an official race location, I will likely be running in my neighborhood.
Why Safe Water is Still A Big Problem
Whether you realize it or not (and I didn’t), access to clean water is still a big problem for many people around the world. In many countries, the average distance a person has to walk to find water is 6 kilometers and this means that the majority of their day may be consumed with this task. It’s also not uncommon that this walk is unsafe, posing many threats to the (usually) women and children who do it daily. And lastly, if that weren’t enough, often the water they are accessing is not entirely safe, containing life-threatening diseases. So yes, there is still much to be done to ensure everyone can have safe and easy to access water.
Why I Care About Clean Water
This issue of clean, safe water is near to my heart. In my PK (pre-kid) days, me and Coach had the privilege of going to Haiti on a missions trip in the months following the earthquake of 2010.
Me and Coach chatting with a Haitian boy while walking along an aqueduct in Haiti.
I will never forgot the story we were told about a non-functioning water pump on the property of the mission where we stayed. Before the earthquakes, the pump did not work as the well had apparently dried up. After the earthquake however, it seemed the earth had shifted just enough to allow the pump to draw water again. I remember this story because (1) it was one good story to come out of the tragedy and (2) the return of water was life-changing to this mission.
The mission, at dawn, where the water well was.
World Vision is working to give access to clean, safe water to more people around the globe and one of the ways they are bringing awareness is through their Global 6K for Water on May 6, 2017. It is a 6K distance because, as mentioned above, this is the average distance someone walks to access water. The race is organized by Team World Vision, who coordinates fitness events with many of the initiatives of World Vision working to alleviate poverty around the world. Since 2006, they have helped more than 30,000 people cross finish lines to raise $30 million dollars for World Vision.
How to Get Involved
Anyone can participate in the Global 6K for Water, anywhere in the world, by running a 6K wherever you are, on May 6th. For your $50 registration fee, you will receive in the mail a race bib with a photo of a child you can sponsor, race t-shirt and a medal. Kids can register for only $25, so get your whole family involved. Please know that your registration fee really does support World Vision’s water program. Register HERE.
Beyond just being a single runner you can take it a step farther by doing one of these 3 things:
- Become a host site for a 6K event. Any community group can rally together to put on a more formal event on May 6th and World Vision will equip you with all the marketing materials, race day signage and staff support for a successful race day.
- Join a local host site. Find a group near you who is a host site and join in!
- Join my virtual team. Invite anyone you know around the globe to join your virtual team and know you are all walking or running together on May 6th. Or, you can join my team. Search for "Team Braddock" (or use the link for this bullet point) under join a team on the registration page. I would LOVE to have you virtually run with me.
- Donate. If running is not your thing, or you are not available May 6th, please consider giving a donation.
I hope you’ll consider joining me and people around the world on May 6th as we bring awareness and solutions to safe, clean water for all. Follow along with World Vision to learn more on their Facebook page or Instagram. And if you haven’t followed me on Facebook or Instagram either, please do as I will certainly be posting about my experience.