Thanks to a Butler College of Education class, residents of Adum-Kwanwoma, a village in the southwestern Ashanti Region of Ghana, have a new source of clean drinking water.
Starting last spring, the 15 students in ED403, an educational leadership course, raised $3200 for the non-profit organization Generosity Water to drill the well. It is one of hundreds of freshwater wells Generosity Water has established in Ghana and other developing countries.
Students promoted the fundraiser and awareness of global water issues on campus. Members of the class, their families, peers and Butler faculty and staff contributed to the well fund at a designated website.
“Every member of our class brought their own ideas to the table, and it was up to us, as leaders, to determine what would work best for the group,” said Michelle Trainor,a middle/secondary English education major from Orland Park, Ill. “There is no way we could have accomplished something so big without working together.”
In early October, the Generosity Water sent photos and a video to Butler, showing children happily splashing and drinking from the Adum-Kwanwoma well. A plaque mounted beside the well reads in part: “Donated by Generosity Water’s Students for Water at Butler University. Commissioned June 2011.”
Senior Chris Beaman said seeing the images from the village was “extremely meaningful” for him and his classmates. “Rewards like that don’t come often,” said Beaman, a middle childhood education major from Greenwood, Ind. “Not only did we have the amazing opportunity to work with others that we learned so much from, we had the opportunity to provide children with a life essential.”
Elementary education major Andrea Brackman of Carmel, Ind., said the well project taught her the importance of service leadership. “By having the opportunity to lead this project, I realize how great an impact we can make if we just put our minds to it,” she said.
Sam May said being involved in the project showed him “how to lead by passion.”
“Passion is what makes you a good teacher,” said May, a secondary education major from Gurnee, Ill.
Beaman said the donation website will remain open for a while. “It is possible for us to still use this site, if any group of students decides to take the initiative to fund a second well.”
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