Monday, March 23, 2015

Girl Power

Not so long ago, I wrote about the impact PowerUp Ethiopia will have on the women and girls that walk miles and miles every day to carry water to their families in the village of Ganda Boya in eastern Ethiopia. The older women want to go to work, and the girls want to be able to go to school. They can't because they're too busy carrying the water (when they're not getting sick from it.) It's not an easy life.

Sydney's promotional material at
The Works' fundraiser on March 16.
But instead of re-telling the readers of this blog about the difficulty of life in Ganda Boya, today I want to share an incredible story from the other end of the international socioeconomic spectrum that testifies to the kind of things strong young women are truly capable of.

Sydney of Loveland, Ohio was one of eighty-three fourth graders that I spoke to a few months ago when asked to present PowerUp Ethiopia in a social studies class. Her school and its community have already been very generous in supporting PowerUp Ethiopia, but Sydney wanted to do even more.

Two months later, Sydney was ushering in guests to The Works, her father's pizza restaurant, for a fundraiser she had coordinated with a few of her friends. 10% of that night's revenue helped fund the project, and guests were offered the opportunity to "buy" a glass of water, just $1 each. Ten-year-old Sydney's efforts brought together enough money to buy an entire solar panel that will power the project's water pump.

Sydney is an outstanding example of the kind of potential that lives in young girls all over the world. Ganda Boya, Ethiopia is no exception. But while Sydney's potential was turned kinetic not least by having her basic needs met, over 1,000 women and girls in Ganda Boya lack basic access to clean water that will free their time to go to work and school.

Let's show the world what 1,000 more economically empowered women can do. A donation of even $15 buys one Ganda Boya resident his or her share of the water system we plan to build.

And just imagine what the women could do then.

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