Talking Points: Dirty Water

Dirty Water

What is it?  

Contaminated water is the fancy way of saying “dirty water” This water doesn’t just have dirt in it though, it has all kinds of really super tiny bugs and worms (parasites) that can make people sick. It also has a lot of “ground contaminates” in it, things like dog pee, cow poop, trash.  This happens to water when people aren’t getting their water from deep in the ground. You and I turn on the faucet to get water, but the water that we get comes from deep in the ground and then the water company filters it (cleans it) and puts it in pipes to go to our homes.  In the developing world a lot of people don’t have enough water especially clean water.  This goes back to what we talked about when we mentioned that when a country is still building they don’t have as many roads, schools, pipes, electricity, for all their people.  One day it will be fixed, but today there are a lot of people in the world who don’t have clean water.  Their water comes from holes they dig in their yard, or they get water from ponds, but it isn’t clean or safe to drink.



What does that mean?


1,200,000,000 (1.2 Billion) people in the world don’t have clean water. (Parents: Every day 24,000 children under the age of 5 die from preventable waterborne illnesses.)  That’s a big number.  The solution is simple really, people need clean water.  It is not hard to give people clean water, but it does take knowing about it and choosing to help.  Just like you and your family are helping give children food, there are other families working to give children water.  It only costs $7 to give a person clean water for 30 years.  


What does the Bible say about it?


The Bible talks about water a lot.  Did you know that there’s a story in the Bible where a woman was going to a well to get water for her family and she saw a stranger in need of water?  He was at a well with all of his camels who were very thirsty.  She saw he was thirsty and that his camels were thirsty and even though it was going to be hard work, she offered to give him water and to give his camels water.  By the end of the story the man is so thankful that he asks her to come and marry his boss.  She ends up playing a big role in the Bible (as the daughter-in-law of Abraham, the wife of Isaac and the Mom of Jacob) and it all started because she saw someone thirsty and she worked hard to give them water. To read more of this story go to Genesis 24.


Giving people water is a simple way to show them God’s love. Next time you go to the park on a hot day take a couple of bottles of water with you and offer them to a stranger who looks hot and thirsty. See how their face lights up by the gift of cool water.  Water is a great gift to share! Now imagine those who don’t have clean water –even at their home. Imagine their delight when water is given to their communities!



How to pray?


Pray for kids who are walking a long way today to get water. Ask God to keep them safe while they walk so far, and ask God to give them clean water where they live so they don’t have to go so far to get dirty water.