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Charity: Water Kickoff Event To Raise Awareness For Global Water Shortages

BC's Chapter Of National Organization Will Host First Event This Wednesday

For The Heights

Published: Sunday, February 5, 2012

Updated: Wednesday, January 9, 2013 18:01

The non-profit organization charity: water was founded in 2006 with the goal of bringing clean and safe drinking water to people in developing nations. This year marks the launch of Boston College's own charity: water branch.

BC charity: water will be holding its kickoff event next Wednesday, Feb. 8 in Gasson 100. Those who attend will enjoy food provided by Roggies, Cityside, Boloco, Bangkok Bistro, and performances by a cappella groups, including The Sharps. The event will take place from 6:00 to 8:30 p.m. There will be no entrance fee, but suggested donations start at $20.

Kimmi Vo, CSOM '14, is responsible for bringing charity: water to BC. After attending World Youth Day in Spain, where she spent seven days hiking in high temperatures and rugged terrain, Vo came to appreciate the fundamental necessity of water and gained the motivation to bring charity: water to BC.

Charity: water works by funding water projects and technologies in schools, villages, medical centers, and hospitals throughout Latin America, sub-Saharan Africa, and Southeast Asia. Thus far, charity: water has helped over 2.5 million people without easy access to clean water.

The facts are disturbing. Diseases from unsafe water and lack of basic sanitation kill more people every year than all forms of violence, including war. In Africa alone, people spend 40 billion hours every year just walking for water. A mother loses one of her children to a water-related illness about every 19 seconds, which adds up to 4,500 children a day.

BC charity: water is seeking to heighten awareness about the global shortage of water, and raise funds from the BC community to combat the dire situation.

"I believe that once the student and faculty body is educated about the global water crisis and how it affects so many things, rather than just health, everyone will want to be a part of the solution," Vo said.

Feb. 8 is a big day for BC charity: water, and not just because of the kickoff event. BC charity: water's YouTube campaign video will be released on that day as well, and a prominent display will go up outside of Hillside Cafe. The display will be updated to mark how close BC charity: water is to reaching its goal of $20,000 in donations by March.

Currently, donations have totaled about $4,000, but BC students will have plenty of opportunities to help. Students can donate online with a credit card at http://mycharitywater.org/bostoncollege-2012. Additionally, BC charity: water will be selling Boloco burritos in the Quad on Thursday, Feb. 9.

BC charity: water is also raising funds through the Penny Pledge, in which a growing number of BC professors (as well as some students) have pledged to donate one penny for each dollar raised (hopefully $200 if the goal of $20,000 is met).

More fundraising events for BC charity: water include the BC South Asian Student Association's (SASA) fair on Friday, Feb. 12 and a charity ball on Mar. 29.

BC students should have plenty of opportunities to donate to this worthy cause, where just a little goes a long way. In fact, just a $20 donation is enough to provide someone with clean water for the rest of his or her life. As Matthew Quinn, A&S '14 and a member of BC charity: water's executive board said, "Boston College charity: water started as a small group of friends just trying to make a difference. But now it's time to include the rest of our fellow students."

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