While we like to make games and fun challenges out of almost anything we can. Some people in some places face hardships and really difficult and serious challenges every day just like these amazing people here in Africa. It was so eye-opening to see the struggles they go through just to get water, and usually, that water is not even clean water. But we were able to assist in building boreholes/wells that give access to thousands of people to get clean water for their entire life. We did, however, participate in several fun challenges, but all in an effort to provide more fresh and clean water to those in need.
After the ribbon-cutting of a brand new borehole or well, we came up with the first challenge. Klai and Cora were a team, Shae and Wyatt were a team, and Evee and Rykel were a team. The challenge was walking to the place where this village previously got water from, which is much further away than the new well. Then, both team members filling up a jug with water and walking or running it back to the village as fast as they could without spilling hardly any water. Some opted to carry the jugs on their heads, some were sprinting the whole way, and others struggled to keep the water inside their jugs while hustling in an attempt to win. This challenge as well as the others were completed in an attempt to have the kids gain even the smallest amount of empathy for what millions of people go through every day. The times each team earned for this challenge are combined with the next two challenges as well.
The second challenge also took place at the opening of another borehole. The people there taught all of us how to fold banana leaves into a hollow circular shape which is meant to sit on top of their heads, which helps the jugs to be more balanced. The competition was to see who can balance a jug filled with water for the longest amount of time on their head. Nearly everyone only was able to do so for two seconds. Rykel was the winner of this game because she was able to balance the water for around four seconds. It was amazing to witness the women and even young girls who were able to walk around with the jugs balanced on their heads. It seemed like they could go forever, while we were struggling to balance the water for only a few seconds without even walking.
The third and final challenge is nearly an exact replica of the first challenge, but at a different location, and a much longer trail. It was nearing the end of the day, so everyone was getting tired. The teams were the same and everyone, even the little girls, powered through and carried the water all the way back into town. It was hard for all of us to imagine that so many people did this four or five times every single day, but it is a reality. This is a reality that we want to eliminate, we want to build more wells so that more people can fulfill the basic need of accessing fresh and clean water.
Evee and Rykel’s combined challenge time added up to 12 minutes and nine seconds. Klai and Cora’s team time came to a total of 12 minutes and four seconds. Shae and Wyatt’s combined time added together to a total of 12 minutes and five seconds, which means they were only one second behind the winning team. Klai and Cora were the winners of the African Water Challenge. The prize that Kali and Cora won was 400,000 Kenyan shillings, which adds up to be around 3,500 U.S. dollars. This is roughly how much it costs to build and open a new borehole, so their winnings, every single penny, is going towards building a new well.
Sometimes it’s difficult to remember that having fresh and clean water so easily accessible to us is such a privilege. On average, people have to walk 2 miles to get water, and they have to do this up to five times a day. Because it takes so much time to travel to and from water sources, they are unable to go to school or learn a trade, so they are unable to make money for their families. Water is one of the most basic needs for all humans. We want to provide as many people as possible with clean water. Just $1 provides fresh and clean water for one person for their entire life! If you want and are able to donate please click here. Thank you for your love and support!