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Walk For Water Publicizes Shortages

For The Heights

Published: Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Updated: Wednesday, January 9, 2013 18:01

Every morning until Mar. 2, two groups of students will meet and walk between one and a half to two miles for the movement known as "Walk for Water." These morning walks mimic the distance many people in developing countries have to walk to reach sources of fresh water, and raise both money and awareness for the Batey Los Robles School in the Dominican Republic.

Walk for Water was started last year by a group of Boston College students, and has expanded this year to include not only the Newton Campus, but the lower campuses as well.

"This year, everyone can participate, even those who don't go to BC," said Du Park, A&S '13, who started Walk for Water along with Kelsey Stuart, CSON '14; Chris Olmanson, A&S '14; and Jon Geary, A&S '14. "We'll be walking down Central Street, and ladies jogging by would say ‘Hey, it's Walk for Water!'"

Allison Gilmer and Brittany Owen, both CSON '15, are leading the group that leaves from Newton at 8:00 a.m. each morning.

"We just want people to know that there are people all over the world who have to walk two miles to get water, and often it's contaminated," Olmanson said. "We want to get the water to the school so the kids don't have to make that walk. Often, they have to miss class to get water, and we want to help give them easier access."

For the founders, faith played a pivotal role in deciding to initiate the program. "We see it as one practical way that we can love people like Jesus loved people," Stuart said. "This is one way we are trying to live that out, by loving people through meeting a very practical need."

This year, Maji, a company founded by BC student Max Ade, A&S '12, is teaming up with Walk for Water. Maji, which donates $5 for every water bottle sold in order to build wells in developing nations around the world, will be donating $5 to the Batey Los Robles School for every water bottle sold to the Walk for Water cause. These water bottles can be purchased online at www.majibottle.com/walkforwater. "It's great, because it's helping both the water bottles and our cause," Olmanson said.

Walk for Water has grown since its inception last year, and its founders are optimistic for the future. "It's gotten bigger than I thought," Park said. "It's annual now, which is great. We want to see it be annual even after we're gone."

Stuart agreed on the continued work that can be done to support the cause and provide clean drinking water for those in need. "This is just one way we're trying to home in on this issue and how we can help, but it shouldn't end just because the walk is over for the year," Stuart said.

The two groups of walkers meet each morning on Newton and outside of Corcoran Commons. The Newton group leaves at 8:00 a.m. in the morning, and the Lower group at 9:00 a.m. These events will continue for two weeks, until Mar. 2.

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