Parishioners of Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary Church in Pasadena traveled to Tanzania to help dig wells and provide clean drinking water to the underprivileged and those living in rural areas.
Over the last few years, parishioners raised over $50,000 for the project, which allowed 10 wells to be built in the Mogorogoro and Singida areas of Tanzania. More than 25,000 people in the regions have benefited from the new access to clean drinking water.
In 2014, parishioners saw the need for clean drinking water firsthand during their visit to Tanzania.
They helped install manual pumps for the wells, allowing for reduced incidence of disease and making water access more readily available. Before the new wells were built, many Tanzanian women in the area would walk many miles to obtain a few gallons of water for their families.
The residents of Pasadena joined forces with Sister Water, a Franciscan-run organization that hopes to improve access to clean drinking water. Safe Water for Life and Dignity, a Tanzanian philanthropic organization, was also a member of the project. The Salvatorian religious community founded the Safe Water organization, which found financial support from longtime Assumption parishioners, Rudy and Sherry Tekippe.
According to Rudy Tekippe, the parishioners were responding to Pope Francis, who said, “It must be reiterated that ‘the more fortunate should renounce some of their rights so as to place their goods more generously at the service of others.’ To speak properly of our own rights, we need to broaden our perspective and to hear the plea of other peoples and other regions than those of our own country.”
For more information about Sister Water, please visit osfdbq.org.