Special to the Review
The Athens Review
Saturday is World Water Day and Athens-based Hope Springs Water will be marking the week with opportunities to donate money to help dig wells for clean water, bid on items signed by members of “Duck Dynasty” and join in a community-wide event.
The World Water Day event will be held at the Athens Brookshire’s from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. This come-and-go event is free to the community.
“People don’t often realize that as little as $20 can give a person clean water for the rest of their lives,” said Stephanie Shelton, a spokesperson for Hope Springs Water. “Many of us spend that much on just coffee and donuts each week.”
Hope Springs Water is a non-profit organization that partners with communities in developing countries throughout the world to provide access to pure drinking water through the drilling of water wells.
As part of their fundraising efforts that day, the group will be auctioning items signed by members of the popular Duck Dynasty family. Hope Springs Water was in West Monroe, La., last week, home of the Duck Dynasty family, and while there, Jase Robertson and John “Ham Samwich” Godwin signed cases of Hope Springs Water, caps, and t-shirts to auction off.
“There’s been some confusion around town that the guys themselves will be coming to Athens on Saturday,” Shelton said. “We wish that were true, but they are actually fully-booked for the rest of the year. But they were very gracious to send along these items for us to auction and raise money for Hope Springs.”
Saturday will be a fun family-friendly event. Hope Springs Water will display “Water for All” art posters from Athens community schools. There will be interactive water-carrying simulations, an original painting by local artist Daniela Matchael for World Water Day, balloon animals and much more.
Extra cases of water will be available at Brookshire’s on Saturday and all this week. Customers in Brookshire’s in Athens, Malakoff, Mabank, Seven Points and Chandler will have an opportunity to “add on” a $1 to their total food bill to benefit Hope Springs.
“This is a very easy way for people to make a donation to help so many,” said Shelton. “We are very grateful to Brookshires for helping us raise money for Hope Springs, and 100 percent of the money donated will go toward helping provide safe water.”
Shelton added that people who visit Brookshire’s on Saturday will also have an opportunity to “stuff the box” with donations of $20. Each person who puts $20 in the box will get an outline of a person to place on our tally board, representing their gift of water to someone.
“We hope to fill that board with cardboard people by the end of the event,” Shelton said.
Founded in Athens four years ago by family physician Ted Mettetal, HSW has drilled wells in Uganda, Ethiopia, Nicaragua, Belize and Mexico. Two weeks ago, HSW was drilling wells in Ethiopia, and in less than a month will again be drilling wells in Belize. These projects are supported through the sale of Hope Springs bottled water in stores throughout the region, and through the generosity of local supporters.
There are more than 6 billion people in the world without access to clean drinking water. It is estimated that every 20 seconds, a child dies from a water-borne disease.
People interested in learning more about Hope Springs Water, or wish to make a tax-deductible donation, can go to www.hopespringswater-.org.