Letter to the Editor:
I have just returned to the United States from a two week trip to Haiti, as the President and representative of Water Without Borders. I am legally blind and started this company over 3 years ago after realizing the devastation that unsafe drinking water causes. Most people do not know that over 4,000 children die daily from unsafe drinking water. It is my intention to provide clean water to wherever needed. That includes the United States and foreign countries.
I have received some criticism for helping an area outside the U.S. It is hard for those who have not seen the problems; you can’t imagine what it is like in Haiti. Children and adults are dying every day. To further complicate the devastation there is now a Cholera outbreak. This need not have happened. A simple sand filter, costing approximately $55 per family, could have prevented this outbreak and the deaths that will result. These filters are easy to install and will last a family of ten a very long time. Water Without Borders helped install 34 sand filters while we were there. We would have liked to install more but our funds were limited.
Anyone who does not realize that we live in the greatest country in the world should visit a third world country. Haiti is not even an emerging nation because it is not emerging – they are barely existing.
Of course, we need to help areas in the United States. This is a shame in a country like this but, nonetheless, a reality. Water Without Borders has not only helped Haiti, we are currently assisting an Indian Reservation called Crow Creek in South Dakota. We are all children of God. We all deserve help when needed, whether it be Africa, Asia, Haiti or the United States.
I am passionate about the cause of bringing safe water to anywhere it is needed. My cause is water because it is not a privilege but a human right. I don’t feel I am doing something special, I feel I am doing something. We can all help by being willing to help others in need. Maybe for you it isn’t clean water but it is important to help no matter what your cause.
The United States is a wonderful melting pot. Many of our ancestors came from different countries and were welcomed into the United States. We are a fortunate people. Helping others, no matter where, is never wrong.
I must admit that criticism for helping another country made me angry and I wanted to lash out but I knew that would not help anyone. The people that are critical should take that energy and devote it to cause of helping others and if they only believe in helping people in the U.S. then so be it.
I clearly do not have all the answers to the world’s problems but what I do have is a commitment to a cause I believe in. That cause is to bring clean, safe water to everyone that needs it in this country or abroad.
I would like to close on this positive note. We have been working with the people in the city of Jacmel, Haiti. I am very impressed and pleased to tell you how far Jacmel has come with education and support.
Thank you for your time