663 million people around the world lack access to clean water. One young woman is determined to change that forever – find out how you can help.
Artist Isabella Innis met George in 2013, when she was a volunteer at Uganda’s Mulago Government Hospital. The little boy and his family had contracted typhoid fever from contaminated water. “I spent three months with him,” she explains. “He moved into my room at the orphanage. I would feed him, I would bathe him, I would put him to bed at night.”
Isabella returned home to L.A., but she thought of George often. Two years later she returned and visited George’s village. Their source for drinking water was a muddy uncovered watering hole. “It doesn’t hit you until you’re standing there, watching women and children consuming contaminated water,” she says. “I’ll never live my life in the same way, having seen that.”
When Isabella got home after that trip, she talked to her brother Issom, who’s in the band Foster the People. He connected her with the charity World Vision, which helped her put on an online fundraiser. They raised $20,000 in less than two weeks and the well was built. Isabella returned to Uganda with her brother and his bandmate Mark Foster, plus actors John Karna and Carlson Young of MTV’s series “Scream.”
“George was extremely special,” adds Isabella. “But his circumstance isn’t special because there’s so many kids across the world that don’t have access to clean water.”
Isabella recommends that people who want to help get involved with an organization like World Vision. On May 6th, World Vision is hosting a 6K event called Global 6K for Water – 6K is the average distance that people in developing nations walk to obtain water, many of them women and children covering dangerous territory.
“And that water they’re walking 6K to get is not always clean water. In fact, usually it’s not,” adds ER Physician Dr. Travis Stork. “Clean water can prevent so many deaths,” he continues. “1,000 children die each day in the developing world. Think about that.”