Wareham High School students raise awareness for world's water shortage

Apr 5, 2018

Wareham High School seniors and juniors got a lesson on the global water shortage on Wednesday, April 4, from the nonprofit “Thirst Project.”

The “Thirst Project” began in 2008, launched by seven 19-year-olds. Since then, the group has raised more than $8 million to build fresh water wells.

The school's Global Education Club early in the year developed a goal of educating students on the world’s water problem. Club members said they felt it tied in well with the new International Baccalaureate program at the school, which widens student perspectives on a global scale.

Wednesday’s presentation was a culmination of lessons and activities over a two-week period. There were student announcements made each morning highlighting a specific aspect of the water issues. Club members then made posters concerning a specific area of the world affected and hung them in the school.

During the presentation, Nicholas Dix and Madison Hough, the club’s co-presidents, introduced two representatives from the “Thirst Project,” Amy Klein and Devyn Drozdowski. Both have traveled the country since January speaking with schools and civic groups about the topic.

Klein opened by giving the specifics of the water shortage, focusing on the country of Swaziland in Africa. She said women and children there are the ones who are tasked with transporting water from unsanitary watering holes to their villages, which on average are four miles away. These jerry cans full of water weigh up to 44-pounds.

This task also prevents these same women and children from obtaining a job to help with the family finances and stops them from going to school. Following the opening, a film was shown explaining one U.S. student's journey through Swaziland as he sought to make a difference in the lives of those without an adequate water source.

After the presentation, students had an opportunity to ask questions and carry the full jerry cans. Many students also chose to donate funds toward the cause. In the past year, the school's Key Club donated $350 following fundraising efforts.