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Our Little Pool

October 15, 2010

This year we put up the smallest swimming pool that we could find for the kids without having it be a little inflatable one.  I sold the idea  to Joel as we’d save money by not having to pay to go a couple of times a week to the city pool as we had in years past – the thing about paid for itself in the first few weeks of summer!  And that was part of my motivation for getting this ‘lil pool for our family.  The other part is that it made me twitch every time the kids would want to play in the sprinkler for long periods of time or that we’d fill and empty our little inflatable pool a few times a week since it didn’t have a filter and turned into a swamp quickly.  The thought of wasting so much water in the name of recreation for my family was more than I could handle.

There are so many people (close to a billion) that don’t have clean drinking water. In the USA, it is something that the majority of people take  for granted.  We can brush out teeth without worrying about getting sick (please turn the water off while you’re brushing), we take a shower in warm, clean water (please don’t start the shower before you get in therefore wasting water in the vein of waiting for it to heat up) and we’ve become such water snobs that the tap water isn’t good enough – it’s got to be filtered/bottled.

We don’t know what it’s like to spend hours a day walking to a clean water source (if one is even available) – most of us can get to clean water in a matter of seconds.  My children have never gotten ill from the water I give them – it’s a thought that doesn’t even cross my mind yet in so many parts of the world, children dying for unsafe water is a regular occurrence.

So what can you do?

On the home front, educate yourself on how much water you use and on ways to conserve water. Our buying a little pool may seem insignificant but over the course of the summer, our water consumption was much less than it would have been.

On the global front, help by raising funds to dig a well for a community without safe drinking water.  There are many organizations doing this right now but I must admit, I’m stuck on charity:water.  There are many reasons that they are at the top of my list for organizations providing clean water in developing countries but the main one is that 100% of donations go toward building a well.  The overhead for the organization is funded completely separate from the water donations so every penny you give  is put towards providing clean drinking water.   And they make donating easy.  You can give a one time donation.  You can purchase a t-shirt, water bottle, bracelet even TOMS shoes and a portion will go towards a well.  Or my favorite, give up your birthday (or other important date) to set up a campaign to raise money for a well.

Clean water is a gift that we all need in order to survive.  Take time today to look for ways that you can help those who don’t have the gift of water and to work on developing a way to cut back on your consumption even if it’s something that seems so insignificant such as a small pool vs. a never-ending running sprinkler.  It matters.

This post is part of Blog Action Day 2010

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