2 Weeks of Sacrifice with Blood:Water Mission

July 28, 2011 § Leave a comment

Does everyone remember my post featuring Blood:Water Mission from last week?

I am happy to announce my decision to participate in the 2 Weeks of Sacrifice program Blood:Water Mission sponsors.  The basic idea is to give up drinking anything but tap water for 2 weeks.

 The goal is to:

  1. Become more appreciative of how easily accessible clean water is in the United States.
  2. Save the money you would normally spend on drinks throughout the 2 weeks and send it to Blood:Water Mission.  Considering that every $1 gives 1 person water for 1 year… think about how so little [in our eyes] can create a huge impact!

I am hoping to start sometime soonwhy the delay?  I was wondering if any of you would like to take this journey with me!?

For both seasoned and new humanitarians alike this should be easy peezy!  Such an effortless and simple solution to such a serious problem.  Just think if you save $1 a day, that would be $14 at the end of two weeks… which would mean 14 lives that you have positively impacted!

I don’t know about you but I think cutting out the Coke Zero [mmm] and the sweet tea for two weeks is well worth the cause!  Besides what a healthy initiative!

Leave a comment below if you would also like to participate in 2 Weeks of Sacrifice.  I will send an email with the “logistics” of the fundraiser.  I will also create an email group for everyone who participates to send updates on the process and the savings!   Then at the end of the two weeks the blog will announce how much we raised as a group + testimonials and personal stories from you!!  

So start thinking about how important soda/coffee/tea is to you and consider joining this initiative!  Then pass it along to your friends and family as well! 

Bethany

Blood:Water Mission

July 21, 2011 § 2 Comments

I first want to start off by saying imagine living in a place without clean water… no water to drink, shower in, brush your teeth with… etc etc.  Think about how much we take for granted clean water on a daily basis.  Yet unsanitary water is a reality for so many people around the world… I am so excited to share with you an organization who is trying to eradicate the water crisis in Africa called Blood:Water Mission.

Today is going to be a great post because this organization inspires me on so many levels.  Like I said yesterday, Blood:Water Mission was the first international relief organization I ever really learned about.  At the time I thought it was like one of the most revolutionary and incredible things I had ever heard of.    It will always hold a special place in my heart and I will always think the work they do is absolutely amazing.

Blood:Water Mission began with a band you may have heard of [they have won a grammy and all], Jars of Clay.  The band was touched by the HIV/AIDS crisis in Africa and noted the connection between battling AIDS with the need for clean water.  In 2005 they started the 1000 Wells Project in the United States to raise awareness and funding to provide clean water and sanitation to 1000 communities in Sub-Saharan Africa.  They promoted the project through this equation:  $1 = 1 year of clean water for 1 African  Sounds simple & cheap enough right?  The project was completed in 2010 after raising millions of dollars through individuals, churches, clubs, and organizations.

Being a student of International Studies, I have been lucky enough to learn about International Development– what works, what doesn’t, what should be done, etc etc.  I am proud to say that Blood:Water Missions does it in a pretty incredible way, which is made obvious by their mission statement:  empower communities to work together against the HIV/AIDS and water crisis in Africa.  One thing I have learned in my studies is that development/relief needs to be localized.  If you are simply giving someone a handout there is no empowerment which in turn creates a cycle of dependency and poverty.   This is one thing that Blood:Water Mission understands.  In their fight against both the HIV/AIDS and water crises, BWM takes these steps of action:

  1. Empowerment: BWM hopes to work with communities to realize their potential, self-worth and capabilities to lead them on a path of improvement.
  2. Partnership:  BWM works with local organizations– building this partnership is one of the most crucial steps in the entire process.  
  3. Implement:  It is only through empowerment and partnerships that BWM is able to implement its water and HIV/AIDS programs.    
To learn more about how BWM works click here.
Another great thing about Blood:Water Missions is that they make it super easy for you to get involved… not only do they have events basically completely planned out for you [here] they also provide you with a ton of resources [here].  
They are also pretty easy to keep track of… check out what progress is being made and how incredible this organization is through their blog [here].
I encourage all of you to explore their website [which is extremely appealing to the eye, who knew web graphics could make you drool?] and learn more and more about Blood:Water Mission.
If you feel like they are an organization worthy of 30 seconds of your time… I want you to check out the Side Bar on your right… there should be an easy-to-see widget that makes it super super easy to help BWM.  Simply click on it do one activity [usually just a 3 question survey] and provide 37 days of clean water to an African!  Pretty easy right?!?
Happy Thursday to everyone!!
Bethany

Background: Humanitarian Spirit

July 20, 2011 § 3 Comments

Here at Project Rejuvenate, we not only want to rejuvenate your spaces with fun decorating ideas and DIY projects… we also want to inspire you to see the world and give back to the world! 

Ever since I was a little girl I’ve had an inner desire to help those around me.  I remember one year I gave all my birthday money to the Duke Children’s Hospital Drive.  I don’t say this to brag, I am just pointing out that God has deposited in me such a deep yearning to reach those less fortunate that even as an 8-year-old helping sick kids meant more to me than buying the latest toys.  Every desire in my heart comes from Him.  This desire grew when I was a teenager and pushed me to become involved in international relief.  I can’t pinpoint the exact moment that I knew helping people in developing countries was what I wanted to do with my life but I know it revolved around 4 events:

  1. I travelled to the Dominican Republic right after I turned 16 with a local church.  While we were there we worked with kids and traveled to many different villages ministering to people.  My eyes were opened to different cultures– I loved being immersed in a place that was so different from my own home.  This trip sparked my interest in travel, but it also showed me how people live, maybe survive is a better word, in the developing world.  I was so moved by it I started to try to find ways that I could get involved… which leads to #2
  2. I read this amazing book called Mountains Beyond Mountains which followed Dr. Paul Farmer’s journey helping impoverished Haitians by providing medical care.  What started as such a small [yet amazing] project turned into something much, much larger.  Now Dr. Farmer is recognized and respected on a global scale.  His impact has reached much further than Haiti and now practices in many countries.  This project turned into an amazing and inspiring organization called Partners in Health, check out more of what they do here.
  3. Also around that time I watched the DVD, Invisible Children.  The DVD followed children of Uganda, victims of civil war –Either forced into becoming soldiers at such young ages or orphaned and living on the streets with no supervision.   Watching the DVD completely broke my heart and it made me realize that there is so much going on in the world that we are not even aware of.  [Maybe it’s not a small world after all?]  Invisible Children as an organization has grown a lot since then… but I’ll probably talk about that more later.
  4. The fourth event was that I learned about Blood:Water Mission— perhaps the first international relief agency I ever knew.  This organization was so inspiring to me at that time I even did school projects based off the organization.  I loved what they did and how they did it.  Which leads me to my next post… look out for more information about Blood:Water Mission tomorrow.  I’m so excited to share with you about this amazing organization and perhaps the easiest way in the world that you can get involved.

I hope this helps explain where I’m coming from and gives some background to where I’m going.  It’s my deepest wish to be able to travel and see more places around the world– and to be able to learn about ways to help in a positive way.  When those days come you better believe I’ll inform you on my journey!   

Bethany

P.S. Do you remember those defining moments in your life– ones that would impact what you do for the rest of your life?  Do you believe God has deposited in you a deep desire to do / be / have something?  Share with me in the comments below!

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