There is a famine right now in Somalia. We are all at the mercy of the media, and the pictures coming across on CNN and Fox are heartbreaking. Children should not be dying of starvation or lack of clean water because evil men refuse to let in aid. I have thought about this often the last 2 weeks when I don't finish what's served to me at a restaurant or spend a little more (or anything) on a bottle of wine, and it creates in me a sense of helplessness and even despair.
But there are ways we can help.
This morning, on the Today Show, I saw the story of a little girl named Rachel Beckwith from Washington State. She was 9 years old when she decided to give up having a birthday party and collect donations in order to help fund a program called Charity Water, which brings clean and safe water sources to children in developing nations; places like Somalia. Rachel was an extraordinary little girl with a heart of sacrifice - a 9 year old choosing to forego a party and presents? Rachel's goal for her birthday was to raise $300 for Charity Water, and she came very close.
Unimaginably, shortly after her birthday, Rachel was killed in a car accident.
Since her death, donations have poured into her Charity Water donations page. Local and then national media outlets picked up the story, and to date, this little girl, in her life and in her death, has raised $1,148,120. Yes, that's well over a million dollars...starting with a goal of $300.
Rachel was a beautiful little girl inside and out. She inspires me to want a spirit and a heart as clean and pure as the drinking water she sought for the small friends she would never meet. I think in the suffering we are witnessing, people have grasped onto her story like a lifeline because they want to believe in this kind of goodness.
If Rachel's story touches you, I encourage you to give what you can in her memory.