Stories from the River

Meet Alyssa, a member of the River since 2016 and winner of our Team #26 trip giveaway in 2020.
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“Throughout my life, I’ve had a heart for and felt burdened by real life, global crises, but I haven’t always known what to do about it. I often had thoughts like – Where do I even begin? Will the money I give really make a direct impact? How can one person like me really help a crisis? Is it possible to truly make a difference?”
Everything changed for me when my husband and I attended an event hosted by the Ugandan Water Project at Restaurant Good Luck in Rochester, NY. It was an incredible night filled with awesome people, delicious food and drinks, and an eye-opening presentation about the need for clean water in Uganda. At one point in the evening, everyone was invited to make a commitment to ending the country’s water crisis by signing up as a monthly partner and, suddenly, it just clicked for me! I saw that UWP was a cream-of-the-crop, best-of-the-best, water relief organization meeting a global need right from my backyard. Not only did I believe in and have vision for the work they were doing, but I TRUSTED them because, whether I could give $1 or $1000, they cared about me as a person. In that moment any fear, hesitancy, or complacency that once overwhelmed was put to rest and replaced by the excitement and urgency of wanting to do something NOW.

When I say I trusted UWP, I meant it… I trusted them so much that I was willing to leaving my husband and two small children to travel to Uganda for two weeks as the winner of the FREE spot on UWP Team #26! That trip changed me as I saw and participated in what UWP is doing for thousands of people from hundreds of different communities through my monthly support. I will never forget talking with a beautiful 11 year old girl at Muyenje CU Primary School. She told me that it took her 5 hours to walk to school EACH way because of the time it took her to stop for water to haul home to her family. Her principal told me that she always fell asleep at her desk because she would need to leave her home by 3am to make it to school on time. Can you imagine that?! And to think that the water she woke so early for and used all her energy to carry was from a severely contaminated water source that was shared with farm animals. I wish I could say that this is an uncommon occurrence amongst children in Uganda but it’s not. These tough, resilient people deserve to have their stories rewritten with hope, peace, confidence, and GREAT health. That is exactly what my monthly donation is doing. It’s making a global impact far beyond what I could ever do alone.

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