WASHINGTON (April 28, 2011) – What makes a young man in Fairfax, Virginia want to reach out and help provide clean drinking water in rural Ghana? For 16 year-old Stephen Axelson, a personal commitment to helping those most in need led him to partner with Africare to organize a 1k & 5k run in Fairfax Virginia in 2010. His efforts raised $15,000 to provide clean water to two rural communities in the Wasa Amenfi West District of Ghana – one of the country’s most underdeveloped regions. Axelson is organizing another run on May 15, 2011, in the Fairfax Corner area of Northern Virginia.
This week Axelson and Africare President Darius Mans traveled to the district to see first-hand the projects funded by Axelson for his Eagle Scout project and also to commission the Ghana Water Access, Sanitation and Hygiene for Health (WASHH) Project which was funded by a personal donation to Africare from President Obama’s Nobel Peace Prize Award. Africare chose to use this funding in Ghana both because of its critical need for clean water and because the country has moved forward as a model of democracy, as underscored by President Obama during his 2009 visit there. Some 1,200 people, especially women and children, are directly benefiting from the Obama and Axelson supported water projects. The projects were implemented by the people of the community themselves through a strong public-private partnership supported by the Government of Ghana, at all levels, and by the traditional leaders in the community. This approach will ensure their sustainability and can easily be scaled up to make safe water and sanitation available to more communities in Ghana.
Africare, the pre-eminent international non-governmental organization focused exclusively on African development, is stepping up its efforts to address clean water issues across the Continent. We encourage the public to come out on May 15 and join the Walk for Water for Africa 1K & 5K. The start times for the 1K run is 8:30 a.m; the 5K begins @ 9 a.m. Location: Fairfax Corner East Ave. in Fairfax, VA 22030 in front of the Coastal Flats Restaurant. Registration fees: 1K-$20; 5K-$30. For children under 12 the cost is $10. You can also show your commitment to clean water for Africa by donating to http://www.firstgiving.com/fundraiser/stephen-axelson/walkforwater4africa.
Find out more information about the Walk for Water for Africa event by visiting www.walkforwater2011.org.
To read more about the project implementation, click here.
To read more about the project completion, click here.