According to the United Nations, over 300 million people in Africa don't have access to safe drinking water and 477 million people live without adequate sanitation facilities. (A hard fact to even imagine here in the U.S., where the vast majority of us take turning on the faucet and indoor plumbing for granted.)
The Global Water Challenge, with support from The Coca-Cola Company, will provide a matching donation of up to $100,000 to the bands Blood:Water Mission. The partnership will donate $1.00 for each of the first 100,000 copies of Good Monsters sold as part of the effort.
The Global Water Challenge (GWC) is a campaign to "save lives and reduce suffering in the developing world by providing safe drinking water, sanitation and hygiene education to people who don't have access to these basic human needs." Launched by The Coca-Cola Company in partnership with other corporations, foundations, and aid organizations such as The Cargill Foundation, Millennium Water Alliance and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the GWC is a partnership to "build healthy communities and save lives by bringing safe water and sanitation to millions."
Blood:Water Mission is "committed to clean blood and clean water to fight the HIV/AIDS pandemic, to building clean wells in Africa, to supporting medical facilities caring for the sick, to making a long-term impact in the fight against poverty, injustice and oppression in Africa through the linking of needs, talents, people and resources, both here at home and there." It was formed in 2002 by multi-platinum, GRAMMY Award-winning artists, Jars of Clay. Last year, the band raised more than $1 million for this mission.
The Global Water Challenge is a demonstration of Coca-Colas leadership in corporate responsibility by not only envisioning a world where all people can have access to clean water, but taking real action to bring that world to being, and that is something to applaud and cheer loudly about, said Dan Haseltine, the bands lead vocalist, in a press release. He continued, This partnership brings two of my greatest passions together, my love for creating music, and my work to help our fans find ways to commit tangible acts of humanitarian service and love toward the poor and oppressed in Africa. It is fulfilling to know that the situation of so many Africans, who suffer under the weight of poverty and disease, will improve because people did something as simple as buy a new Good Monsters CD.
Completely produced by the band, the CD offers eleven original songs, and a remake of the Julie Miller song, All My Tears. Good Monsters features a couple of surprise guest appearances: Nashville-based, singer/songwriter Kate York guests on Even Angels Cry, and formerly of Sixpence None the Richer, Leigh Nash, sings on Mirrors and Smoke. The African Childrens Choir is featured on Light Gives Heat.
So many people and bands (both Christian and mainstream) in the spotlight talk about "giving back", yet it seems like the act of doing so takes a backseat to selling albums and keeping the fans happy, so to see a band like Jars of Clay not just doing it, but doing it on a grand scale really makes my day while it makes me wonder what more I can do to help others. Jesus himself said that we should love our neighbors as we love ourselves. Could you live a life that didn't include having clean water to drink?