I’m so excited for this week’s suggestion of how you can change the world. It is so easy, hands on, and makes an actual difference while raising awareness about an important issue. You can change the world by participating in the Birthday Project at Charity:Water. Basically, you pledge your birthday to helping people gain access to clean water, make a page for your campaign on the charity:water website, and ask for donations instead of gifts. And, 100% of the money raised through the birthday project will go directly to funding clean water projects. So, now you might be wondering, why would you pledge your birthday to fund clean water projects around the globe? Great question. Here’s why…
- Diseases from unsafe water and lack of basic sanitation kill more people every year than all forms of violence, including war. Children are especially vulnerable, as their bodies aren’t strong enough to fight diarrhea, dysentery and other illnesses.
- In Africa alone, people spend 40 billion hours every year walking for water. Women and children usually bear the burden of water collection, walking miles to the nearest source, which is unprotected and likely contaminated. Time spent walking and resulting diseases keep them from school, work and taking care of their families. Along their long walk, they’re subjected to a greater risk of harassment and sexual assault. With safe water nearby, women are free to pursue new opportunities and improve their families’ lives.
- Feeding our world takes up to 90% of our freshwater withdrawals. When a water project is built in a community, members can often use the new water source to grow small gardens near their homes and secure their own food supply. Self-sufficient households are less affected by conflict, famine or inadequate government services.
Learn more at Charity: Water
And, if you don’t want to pledge your birthday to this, why not pledge it to another cause you are passionate about? My birthday is March 30, and that is what I am going to do. I haven’t decided if I am going to go with Charity: Water or some other organization, but rest assured that I will be letting you all know! Please join me in making our birthdays count for something more than cake. (Although, cake is delicious. Did anyone else’s mouth water at that picture?)
(Charity:Water is a four star rated charity at Charity Navigator)