It’s been a hot summer, and after a long day, nothing can beat the feeling of drinking a cold glass of water. And when we get that water straight from our kitchen sinks, we often don’t think about how privileged we are. Water is a very basic necessity, yet many people around the world don’t have access to safe water, and they face limitations because of this.

August is National Water Quality Month, and it is the perfect time to make some changes to how you think about water.

2.1 billion people live without clean water in their homes, and 1 in 9 people don’t have access to clean water at all.

More than 10 percent of the world’s population can’t drink water from their pipes, and this issue affects more than just health and sanitation. When clean water is unavailable, family dynamics are impacted. Since women are usually the ones in charge of collecting water, they have to spend extra time each day walking to a drinkable water source, which can sometimes be miles away. This means the women can’t work for pay, families can’t afford to send their children to school, and a cycle of poverty continues for generations.

This is a problem in many countries, states, and villages around the world. One of these states is Bihar, India.

Bringing Clean Water to Bihar, India

In Bihar, India, where there is a women empowerment measure of .379, ranking among the top ten worst in the world, women and children spend hours daily walking miles to gather just enough water to live off of.

But Jesus’ Economy is working to change that. Jesus’ Economy has funded the drilling of four water wells in Bihar, providing 7,100 people with access to clean, safe water. Every dollar donated to this program funds the building, upkeep, and safety of the wells.

However, it doesn’t end with clean water. Following the funding of the wells, Jesus’ Economy is also working to empower women through literacy programs, business training, offering microloans, and planting churches.

Lives are changed for the better when clean water becomes available around the world.

This month consider becoming part of the movement to provide the basic necessity of clean water to people all over the world, which will also help families lift themselves out of poverty. Clean water can change the world.

 

Mother’s Day is coming up in a couple weeks, and while you can buy her something special from our Fair Trade Shop, consider making a donation in her name to one of our programs to end poverty in Bihar, India.

In Bihar, more than a million people are living in poverty because they do not have access to clean water or the ability to buy or grow food. The economy is poor, and there are simply not enough jobs. And when families have limited food and water, education gets pushed back, and the families remain stuck in a cycle of poverty.

But Jesus’ Economy is doing something to stop that, and this Mother’s Day, you can donate to eradicate poverty.

Provide Clean Water in Bihar, India: Meet Basic Needs

A large contributor to the poverty in Bihar is a lack of clean water. Some women and children spend many hours each day walking miles to collect drinking water. This takes up so much time that women cannot work and children cannot go school. Our clean water program raises funds to drill wells in Bihar. Each well can provide safe water for 2,000 people, and so far we have completed four wells.

Create Jobs in Bihar, India: Empower Women

When families have access to safe water, women have more time to work and provide for their families. Our empowering women program is going to train 40 women to run successful tailoring businesses and sell their products on the western market. These women already have skills in tailoring, but need an opportunity to learn business skills.

Plant Churches in Bihar, India: Spread the Gospel

We are working to bring hope through the alleviation of physical and spiritual poverty. Our church planting program funds church planters in various villages in Bihar to set up home churches, and also to go into the villages and share the gospel. At this point, we are funding four church planters, all of whom are additionally starting Bible studies and literacy training as they go. Thousands of people in Bihar are hearing the gospel for the first time, and each church planter brings the gospel to thousands more.

The moms in our lives have shaped us and taught us how to take care of the world. On Mother’s Day, celebrate these moms by giving back and fighting to end poverty.

When we fill our glasses with clear, cold water from our kitchen sinks, or even twist open a water bottle, we often don’t think about how privileged we are.

2.1 billion people live without clean water in their homes, and 1 in 9 people don’t have access to clean water at all.

You can take the opportunity this World Water Day to change that.

More than 10 percent of the world’s population can’t drink water from their pipes, and this issue affects more than just health and sanitation. When clean water is unavailable, family dynamics are impacted. Since women are usually the ones in charge of collecting water, they have to spend extra time each day walking to a drinkable water source, which can sometimes be miles away. This means the women can’t work for pay, families can’t afford to send their children to school, and a cycle of poverty continues for generations.

This is a problem in many countries, states, and villages around the world. One of these states is Bihar, India.

Bringing Clean Water to Bihar, India

In Bihar, India, where there is a women empowerment measure of .379, ranking among the top ten worst in the world, women and children spend hours daily walking miles to gather just enough water to live off of.

But Jesus’ Economy is working to change that. Jesus’ Economy has funded the drilling of four water wells in Bihar, providing 7,100 people with access to clean, safe water. Every dollar donated to this program funds the building, upkeep, and safety of the wells.

However, it doesn’t end with clean water. Following the funding of the wells, Jesus’ Economy is also working to empower women through literacy programs, business training, offering microloans, and planting churches.

Today consider becoming part of the movement to provide the basic necessity of clean water to people all over the world, which will also help families lift themselves out of poverty. Clean water can change the world.

For her birthday in 2017, Jesus' Economy volunteer, Rachel Thompson, took on an ambitious task: to raise $500, half the value of a water well in Bihar, India.


When the donations came pouring in and Rachel's campaign surpassed its goal, she went one step further. During the Christmas season of the same year, she asked friends and family to donate in order to raise the full $1,000 value of a water well, providing thousands of people with clean water. We interviewed Rachel about her campaign journey and the stories of God's faithfulness she saw along the way.

Q: Rachel, tell us a bit about yourself, your family, and your involvement with Jesus' Economy.

My husband and I both work in church ministry in Ithaca, New York. We have two beautiful young children. I've volunteered with Jesus' Economy for several years. I started out throwing house parties for products and more recently have served as the executive assistant. I enjoy being part of a driven and talented team.

Q: Why did the idea of a birthday campaign appeal to you?

There is such a disparity of wealth and resources in our world. When I think about accumulating more stuff, it just strikes me as ridiculous. Especially after moving all of that stuff recently! Fundraising through Jesus' Economy is really attractive and easy. I think people are looking for meaningful gifts to give their loved ones. I thought I could leverage that to shine some light in the world. Many of us want to help people in need, and are looking for the way to do so. While I was thrilled about the generosity of my friends and family during this campaign, I wasn't surprised. Good people are looking for ways to help others, and organizations like Jesus' Economy are offering streamlined ways to do so.

Q: Why did you choose to raise money for clean water in Bihar?

Especially since becoming a parent, I have refocused my priorities. The most important thing to me is that my family's needs are met. When my husband comes home to a peaceful sanctuary, my kids know love, they have food to eat, and a warm bed to sleep in, I can also thrive. My heart aches for parents who do not have access to basic needs like clean water for their children. I don't understand how people can be dying from water-borne illnesses in 2017. We live in such an interconnected world, and organizations like Jesus' Economy are connecting Western prosperity with third world needs. Jesus' Economy's Renew Bihar project is promoting a holistic approach to empowering the impoverished. I love that the church planters we partner with in the area will have the opportunity to share the love of Christ, the Living Water, through this well.

Q: Please share with us some stories from your campaign. How did you see God working through your efforts?

It was really beautiful to witness God inspiring the people who donated to this campaign. Donors included people from all walks of life—farmers, missionaries, teachers, nurses, stay-at-home moms, ivy league grads and PhDs, teenagers, and children. A student from our youth group made a large donation. There was one story in particular that was really special. My sweet friend and fellow pastor's wife shared the well project with her children [and invited them to participate]. She recounted the story below.

"'So you know Mrs Thompson? For her birthday sometime in the summer, she was asking people to donate money to build a well in India instead of giving her presents. She was hoping to raise money for half the well which costs $500, but she ended up raising more than that. So for Christmas, she decided to ask more people to donate money instead of giving her Christmas gifts to see if she could get enough to build a whole well. She has raised [at the time], $911. She only has $89 left to getting a full well built. You don’t have to, but would you like to give some money to help her get her well built?' James had a lot of questions about the well. We talked about how not every child has access to running water like we do. I did emphasize that giving was optional and the amount was optional. No sibling had to know what the other gave. Adam and Sophia gave generously but what touched me most was James (who is 7). He jumped up and ran upstairs for his piggy bank. He had $2 in it and he took out a dollar and gave it to me for 'Mrs Thompson’s well.'"

 

If you would like to start a campaign for clean water, empowering women, church planting or another aspect of the vision of Jesus' Economy to create jobs and churches in the developing world, start here.

Dedicate Your Birthday 

Imagine having to fight for water that isn’t even safe enough to drink. That was the reality for people in a remote village in Bihar, India. Before Jesus' Economy stepped in, many of the water wells located in the village were contaminated with high concentrations of iron ore, and a majority of the wells were privately owned. The poorest people in the community were denied access to this privately held clean water.

Through your donations, we were able to drill a water well in the heart of the village that provides everyone with clean, drinkable water. Drilling the well transformed the lives of hundreds of people and gave this village of 5,000 access to clean water. The well is directly benefiting 200 to 400 villagers who are drinking from it regularly. In addition, many of the villagers learned about Jesus when the well was dedicated. Without your help, these villagers would still be drinking dirty water.

 

The efforts in this remote village in northeast India are part of our Renew Bihar project, which is providing access to the gospel and clean water, as well as empowering women through business. Together, we're renewing hearts, homes, and hope. Thank you for joining us in this most important effort.

Donate to Renewing Bihar

After realizing that the Indian government would not be able to assist them, the people in a small remote village in Bihar, India had to settle with drinking dirty water. The majority of the villagers are laborers, primarily fishermen. A constant supply of clean water was out of their reach; they simply could not pull enough resources together to pay for a well. Our newest church planter, Rahul, told us about this village and the struggles the villagers face every day, and we felt compelled to help.

Due to your generous donations, over 300 people now have access to clean water. Nearly 60 people gathered for the well’s inauguration, and chose to thank God for providing one of their most basic needs.

Bihar, India is one of the most impoverished places in the world and together we're lifting people out of poverty. Our efforts to bring clean water to the impoverished are part of our Renew Bihar project.

Our Renew Bihar project is bringing the gospel to the unreached, empowering women through job training and microloans, and supplying clean water. With your support, we're renewing hope, hearts, and homes. We're renewing entire communities. Thank you.

Donate to Renewing Bihar

In a remote village in Bihar, India, there is a group of people who lack access to the basics and are living in extreme poverty. This situation is repeated in village after village, but this year, we had an opportunity to do something about it. Thanks to one generous donor, a village of 500 people now have access to clean water.

On October 4, 2014, in partnership with a local organization, we drilled a 180-foot bore well in Bihar. This well provides clean water, year-round, to the 500 residents of the village. Prior to this well being drilled, the people of this village were often forced to drink out of an open well that was contaminated. The village's poor water and sanitation situation was brought to the attention of our partner in Bihar and thus brought to our attention. Now, this group of impoverished people has access to clean water.

It only costs $1,000 to give a village clean water. In this instance, that cost breaks down to $2 per person; that's the price of the joy of clean water. And that's a price all of us can afford.

See the Joy the New Water Well Brings

A Little Girl Drinks from the New Well

 

 

Two Women Draw Water from the New Well for Their Households

 

Every last dollar you donate to Jesus' Economy goes exactly where you designate. That means that if you give $100 to a water well in India, we only spend your $100 in India drilling a water well.

Consider contributing to another well project in Bihar.  

 

Remember the water well you helped us drill earlier this year? In partnership with a local organization, and thanks to the funding you provided, we drilled a 180-foot deep water well in a village in Bihar, India in May 2014.

1,300 people live in this village and most of them didn't have access to clean water before May 2014. There is so much we could say and so many wonderful stories to tell, but for now, a picture says 1,000 words.

 

A boy drinks clean water from the new well

 

A woman obtains a bucket of clean water from the new well

 

 

Another woman obtains clean water for her household, as other villagers watch with joy

 

A young woman laughs as she obtains clean water for her household

 

Consider contributing to another well in Bihar, India.