From Irvine, California, across the US, Europe, and all the way to Thailand, thousands of people have gathered to Walk for Water throughout this past year. In more than 40 communities around the world, funds have been raised to fight the global water crisis and bring awareness to the need for safe water.
Globally more than 2 billion people lack access to safe water. Women and children walk an average of three miles per day to collect water for their families. These long, sometimes dangerous journeys keep children from attending school and leave women with little time for income-producing activities.
The Walk for Water is designed to simulate this walk. Participants walk a total of three miles, starting at one location with an empty bucket, walking about a mile and a half to fill their bucket with water and then walking back with the heavy, full bucket.
“The Walk for Water has tremendous impact in mobilizing a local community and serve as a catalyst for awareness and advocacy in addressing the global water crisis,” said Heather Fleming, Water Mission’s national walk program coordinator. “With more than $860,000 raised through Walk for Water events so far in 2023, they make an incredible impact in providing clean, safe water across the world.”
Organized by a variety of people from community members to leaders of large corporations, Walk events occur in the streets of small towns, in sports stadiums, in urban neighborhoods, on nature trails, and in numerous other locations.
“We are so very grateful for the dedicated employees and volunteers at Water Mission who work tirelessly to bring safe water to those in need,” said Sue Burt, marketing director and senior leader at Burt Process Equipment, Inc., in Hamden, Connecticut. “With 107 registered walkers, we raised over $23,000 this year, bringing our five-year Walk total to over $100,000 donated to Water Mission. Keep up the great work you all do, and we’ll keep walking so others don’t have to!”
Although each Walk for Water looks a little different, one thing is the same—people are walking so others can live a healthier, safer, and joyful life with access to safe water.
“The biggest highlight is seeing the local community coming together around such a great cause,” said Robert Lasher, event coordinator in Beaufort, South Carolina.
In areas where water is scarce, people must collect water from streams or shallow ponds that are also used by animals. Sadly, this water is unsafe to drink and makes people sick. More than 800,000 people die each year due to water-related illness.
Through the generosity of communities and partners around the world, funds raised by Walks this year will bless more than 17,000 people with access to safe water.
“It is amazing to see over 4,450 Walkers across more than 40 locations, all with the common goal of raising funds and awareness for the global water crisis,” continued Fleming. “We’re thankful for everyone who walks so others don’t have to.”
Starting in Charleston, South Carolina in 2006, the Walk for Water event has raised millions of dollars and has expanded into 35 countries. Learn how you can start or get involved in a Walk in your area and join our efforts to bring safe water to as many people as possible, as quickly as possible.