Water, just plain old water and yet life giving. So easily we take for granted our clean fresh water, yet not even in the Midwest especially Kansas are we completely spared from water troubles, just think about the fields the last few years, an entire section of the USA is currently affected and the outcome for more farmers than ever is up to chance alone. Right now there is a bit more than the last 3 years however some US farmers have used up their allotment for the year!

corn in bad shape

Even if not historically groundbreaking, an unwelcome sight in the Midwest.

Of course for us who live here we are solaced by the fact that the water faucet just needs a small turn and the life giving liquid will flow, almost never do we give it a second thought; faucet on-water flows. In many places where we work, people live constantly under the exact opposite condition. We have children in some of our schools that may spend several hours each day to get water, and then there is still no guarantee that the water is clean, in fact in many places where the water is not clean one would fib about that fact as life is just easier that way. Can dirty water be better than no water, I wonder.

More than 1.1 billion of the world's 7 billion people lack access to clean water. Last year over 1.5 million children died in diseases related to dirty water and poor hygiene. Many of the diseases that plague people in developing countries today would not exist if there was access to clean water and good sanitation was the norm. The international consensus states that if current trends continue it is estimated two-thirds of the world's population lack access to clean water by 2025. Let’s just break that down in a different syntax; only one in three on earth will have clean water in the future, come on it’s just water!

Not a normal situation across the globe.


Humans can survive without food for up to three weeks, but without water we will die in less than 3 days. I fear that the lack of water will lead to more conflict and deteriorating living conditions for the worlds already vulnerable. Even when it comes to something as obvious as water, it is the poor who take the biggest and hardest hit. They cannot afford to buy bottled drinking water, they do not have city water nor can they buy the water treatment products needed to make the water drinkable. They do not even have the ability to protect the natural springs, rivers, streams where some for centuries they have obtained water. Extreme poverty and ignorance makes it difficult for people to take responsibility for the future of natural resources. But our Western lifestyle has also led to an over use of water and in that context, even we with our good access to water are complicit in belittling water availability.

Did you know that it takes 1 and 1/3 pound of chemicals and 3000 gallons of water to produce a pair of jeans? Many of the clothes we wear right here in the USA are manufactured in countries that already have a shortage of water and some of the manufacturing processes do not help the water situation with illegal dumping and leakages.

Think instead that for many, all the time spent to get water or time in sickness due to bad water , could actually be used for something more productive, such as work, school, or why not rest or play. I think our world would look different. Of course there is no shortage of methods to solve the world's water problems, but we need to take joint responsibility for the water. Cultivation, supply, respect and hygiene can be realized only if people have access to the resources and knowledge needed to be a steward of the resource.

Large schools need large amounts of water.

Sometime we have to go deep!

I feel Star of Hope has an important function; in our schools and in the projects where we work, we want to provide knowledge about the importance of water. In several places we work we have water because water systems have been built; dams, wells, irrigation canals or made rainwater capture a workable technology of course sometimes we have to run ½ inch pvc water pipe for long stretches. We teach children and their parent’s hygiene and the importance of sanitation; we give them the tools to fight for their rights - and of course the right to clean water something that without a doubt is worth fighting for and something that must be respected.

The finished product, right thing at right place.

That's what it's all about, sweet water!

When you sponsor a child through Star of Hope we make sure water is also a deliverable to that child’s school or community and that is a good thing my friends!


Mark Presson
Star of Hope

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