Tag Archives: walk4water


29 Jun
Walk4Water_studentsPhoto credits: Janelle Gustafson

One of my favorite days of the year is our annual Walk4Water at the church where I serve, Prairie Oak Community Church. We fill our buckets full of water and “feel the burn” as we trudge two miles through suburban Andover, Minnesota.


The purpose of our event is to change two communities: our own by bringing awareness of the need for clean water and the community where a well will be built with the proceeds. This year’s proceeds will go to a community in Liberia that was hard hit by the Ebola virus.

Sierra Leone well(1)
Past project results in a well in Sierra Leone

What I love about this event is how it brings us together as one no matter the age. Parents will often pull younger children in wagons. Dogs are always invited to walk along with us. Every generation is represented in the long line of people in matching blue shirts taking an hour of their time to make a difference in the world.


Last year we added a 5K fun run to the event. I love the cheering and encouraging words that are shouted to the runners- especially by those who have finished the race and who wait at the finish line.


Sponsoring a Walk4Water event in your community is a great way to not only raise money for clean water initiatives, but also to raise awareness in your community of the need for clean water. Ultimately the goal is to change two communities: one in need of water and one in need of compassion.

A Walk4Water event can be any size whether a small group of family members and friends or a large organization of 500.

The event can include a pre-walk party or information session, the 2-mile walk, 5K run and an after-party. During the walk participants carry buckets of water to “feel the burn” that those without clean water near them feel as they walk to the nearest water source. For those who are physically unable to carry buckets, supply water bottles to carry. Families enjoy walking together pulling younger kids in wagons. Also, participants can recruit teams from work, the gym, neighborhoods or extended family. After the walk consider holding a picnic with grilled hotdogs and other simple food.


For detailed information on how to host your own Walk4Water click here. If you would like to donate this year’s Walk4Water project, visit our website.

River’s Edge has a Clean Water lesson for kids that helps them understand that a way we love others as Jesus told us to do is by supplying clean water to those in need. Consider teaching this lesson as a way to prepare for the walk.

Have you done something with your church, family or organization to raise money for clean water? We’d love to hear about it.



Exciting New Updates!

13 Jun

Over here at River’s Edge we have new and exciting things happening. After a long hiatus, River’s Edge is gearing up and getting ready to bring to you new content, ideas, and inspiration –Starting this upcoming week. Keep an eye on your email inboxes Monday. For those who are on the edge of their seats in excitement, we will give you a glimpse of what is to come. BeFunky Collage.jpg

Monday Mornings: They Learn Best By Experiencing

24 Jun


Yesterday our church sponsored a Walk4Water to bring awareness of the need for clean water in the world. Participants carried buckets of water two miles to experience something of the same physical discomfort that those in parts of the world without a close water source might experience. Money was raised from sponsors of the event and from the registrations to build a well in Zambia where the need is great.

I loved watching the families participate together. To see these young kids learn early that not everyone gets to turn on a tap and drink clean water from it. Not everyone has ice cold water coming from the front of their refrigerator. Not everyone has a water hose connected to the house easily attached to a sprinkler and instant summer fun.


I was reminded the importance of creating spaces where kids can experience and learn. Where, for at least a short period of time, they have empathy for those with less.

As I watched these young kids- some four year olds- trudging along with their parents, I was reminded that teaching kids is much more than having them repeat a prayer to become a Christ follower. It is experiencing suffering and life as Jesus would have. It is teaching them to care about others in the same way that Jesus cared.  It certainly is bringing them along side us and allowing them to join in the suffering.

 For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in,I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me. Matthew 25: 35-36