Speed the Light & WorldServe International | Matt Reed
There are 844 million people worldwide living without access to clean drinking water. Women and children spend an estimated 200 million hours every day walking miles to collect unsafe water. This unclean water is the leading cause of childhood illness and death.
Recently, Speed the Light announced a strategic partnership with WorldServe International and committed $1.5 million in a nationwide effort to dig water wells in East Africa. WorldServe is focusing much of its effort in 2019 in the country of Kenya.
Last month I traveled with Kirby St. John and a small group of youth pastors to the Turkana region of northern Kenya to witness the need for ourselves. Turkana is dry desert land and the poorest region in Kenya. It’s currently experiencing drought and the need for clean water is great. Nationally, Speed the Light is hoping to dig 150 wells in the region.
Our team visited two communities where water wells had recently been dug. Each well was placed next to Kenyan Assemblies of God churches, which instantly makes them the central hub of their community. The churches have experienced tremendous growth since the wells were installed.
WorldServe International is committed to sustainability. They drill deep boreholes to provide water for not only the current generation, but the generations to come. Each site is equipped with a solar panel distribution system. They also partner with community leaders, like local pastors, to take ownership of the maintenance of each system.
Over the past four years, Minnesota students have funded dozens of wells in Tanzania, Ethiopia, and Kenya. In 2019, they are committed to funding $275,000 in water well projects through Speed the Light as well as fighting human trafficking, and equipping our missionaries with vehicles and equipment to share the gospel all over the world. Overall the goal is to raise $2 million for Speed the Light in 2019. As the saying goes, “Why not Minnesota? And why not now?”