Ten years ago, Jena Lee Nardella was a fresh-out-of-college, twentysomething with the lofty goal of truly changing the world. Armed with a diploma, a thousand dollars, and a dream to build one thousand wells in Africa, she joined forces with Grammy Award–winning band Jars of Clay to found Blood:Water and begin her mission. Jena’s dream for her nonprofit turned that initial $1 into $20, and then $100, and today into more than $25 million. Working throughout eleven countries in Africa, Blood:Water has provided healthcare for over 62,000 people in HIV-affected areas and has partnered with communities to provide clean water for more than one million people in Africa. from synopsis of One Thousand WellsEarth Day, we are called to take personal and collective action to preserve our planet, including steps to reduce our ecological footprint.This is also a day to celebrate hopeful signs, such as the work of the organization Blood:Water.
In the book One Thousand Wells, Jena Lee Nardella tells us about the ideas that led to the founding of the organization and the challenges and struggles that followed. Over the past decade, Blood:Water has created the tools (such as wells, biosand filters, rain tanks) to help provide clean water for 1 million people in sub-Saharan Africa and provided assistance for 62,000 patients in areas where HIV is prevalent (hence the word blood)
"Sometimes the best water source is simply beneath a community’s feet. Wells pump safe, clean water for all to use," Blood:Water says on its website.
Rather than tell you more about 1,000 Wells, here is an excerpt of a review that that my friend Elaine VanCleave posted on Good Reads in August 2015.
|Jenna Lee Nardella (center) at a forum in Nashville in 2015|