From the San Mateo Daily Journal, Heather Murtagh details the fund raising effort.
Looking for a class project, eighth grade students at St. Matthew’s Episcopal Day School found clean water to be an interesting topic — and, as it turns out, an enlightening one.
A person can get clean water for life for $25, according to WaterPartners International, a U.S. nonprofit committed to providing safe drinking water and sanitation to people in developing countries. The St. Matthew’s community set a goal of raising $10,000 — enough to provide clean water for a village in India. Efforts kicked off in March on World Water Day and ended yesterday, Earth Day. Through a change drive, an Indian dinner feast and other activities students raised cash for the cause. Money raised will be tallied today.
Students needed a class project and learned about the need in other countries for clean water, explained 13-year-old Nate Mooi.
A St. Matthew’s parent, Tony Stayner, is on the board for WaterPartners and had taken his two eighth-grade children to India to see the work in November. The trip provided a firsthand experience with poverty and effects of not having clean water.
“I didn’t think about how much we have and other’s don’t,” said seventh grade student Nicole Crisci.
Thirteen-year-old Nicki Williams agreed, adding how often water is used daily without a thought. Brushing your teeth or taking a shower are routine here.
“It’s a luxury if you put yourselves in their shoes,” she said.
Fifth grade student Polly Finch takes a shower in the morning and evening. She thought the idea of a shower must be amazing to those in impoverished countries.
Through the project, students began to learn about the effects of water. For example, a five-gallon water jug weighs about 40 pounds. In areas without clean water, children often must carry these jugs three to four miles. As a result, the children end up missing opportunities for education.