More than 1 billion people lack access to clean water, and half of all the world’s hospital beds are occupied by patients suffering from a water-related disease, according to Clean Water for the World.
The University of Toledo’s Catholic Student Association’s Christian Service Program is helping to change that by raising funds for the nonprofit organization.
On Saturday, April 13, the Catholic Student Association is sponsoring Walk 4 Water 2013, a fundraising event designed to increase the Toledo community’s awareness of the worldwide lack of access to clean water and to raise money for Clean Water for the World.
Participants can choose between either a 5K run or walk that will start on Centennial Mall on UT’s Main Campus and go through Ottawa Park. During the race, participants are encouraged to carry water jugs to symbolize the walk women and children in developing countries make every day to get water.
“We definitely take clean water for granted here,” said Casey Backs, a UT student who is helping to organize this year’s Walk 4 Water. “Around the world, there are people who have to walk for miles to get water from a well and it’s still not even clean water. It’s not that people are purposely ignoring the issue, but we just aren’t faced with it here every day, and we forget that there’s a real problem.”
Clean Water for the World builds and distributes water purification units at no cost to communities without access to clean water. The purification unit is designed to filter water for a village of 300 families, and with proper installation and use significantly lowers reported disease.
The goal for the UT fundraiser is to provide five units for Kenya, Haiti, Uganda and India.
Registration for the race is $10, and participants are encouraged to do so online in advance, although there will be registration available at the event.
Participants also can purchase a T-shirt for $6 with online registration or $10 on the day of the walk.
Race day registration will begin at 10 a.m. with the race starting at 11 a.m.