Ever since traveling to Zimbabwe as a teenager in 1990 for the first time, I have loved Africa and its people. Our family loved it so much, we wound up purchasing an old cattle ranch and have spent the last decade or so transforming it into a wildlife preserve, reintroducing the many species of game wiped out years ago to make way for cattle. Located in a highly drought-prone part of the country, with only 12-14 inches of rain a year, the game on the property and the many neighboring communities desperately needed access to water!
Thousands of local Shona and Shangaan people struggled to irrigate their crops, water their livestock, and have clean drinking water. Our family was able to provide and see firsthand what a new borehole or well, with a functioning diesel or solar pump could do to improve the lives and sustainability of so many.
As such, for the last several years, we have led our local Mt. Pleasant Presbyterian Church group on Water Missions International’s annual Walk for Water event in Charleston, SC. It is amazing to think that $10 can provide an African child with clean drinking water for life, and that many of us will spend that on coffee in just a day. It was great fun to participate with the entire family knowing the monies raised would have such a direct impact on the livelihood of people who lack even the basic necessities in life.
Michael Schenck is a Senior Sales Executive based in Charleston, SC. He is pictured with his wife, Wynne, and daughters Lizzie Lane and Dailey.