“Never underestimate the ability of a small group of committed individuals to change the world; indeed they’re the only ones who ever have.” (Margaret Mead)

OK, here we go.

Sometime in December, I did some rough math. I was all excited because I thought I was onto something. I wondered, “So if we raise $60,000 every year at Water For Christmas, how many years would it take us to give Liberia clean water?” I furiously typed numbers into the calculator. Hit the equal button….

300 years.

Hmmm.

That’s a little discouraging.

But it haunted me. And I couldn’t shake it.

We have to use this. This is too important.

I might be busy in 300 years. And more importantly, the thirsty cannot wait that long.

Wrestled with it. Heard from so many of you that said, “Now what?”

And settled that we simply will kick it up a notch…or 300.

We will expand our borders, involve more people…300 times.

And then it won’t take 300 years, we can do it in one year.

So here’s the plan. Stay with me.

We need 300 people.

300 people to make a committment to 300 Voices…Water for all Seasons. This will be a commitment of $20/month. (that’s $5 a week, $240 for the whole year). WFC fund will stay open all year. We get 300 people to commit to $20 a month for 2009 and that’s an additional $72,000.(Did you get that? For your $20 a month, combined with 299 others and their $20 a month that is $72,000 in 2009. That’s 15 wells!) That’s a lot of money. For little sacrifice personally. (as always, 100% of money goes to charity: water. They use 100% to drill fresh water wells and clean water solutions).

But beyond that the idea is to keep water on the hearts and minds of a 300 person team. For where our treasure is, there will our hearts be. So we give all year. We pray. We dream. We plan. And then in November 2009, we kick off Water For Christmas with a team of 300. (Now, you are not committing to anything as far as next years campaign goes…you don’t have to do anything. But I think you will want to. But there will be no obligation to be involved in Water For Christmas 2009).

This is how it will work:

water4christmas.com is being developed. And will be ready for launch later in the year.

But for now, go here to sign up. (Kari has been working extremely hard to get this ready. Many, many thanks.) Give us your name and location. We will start of list of people around the country who are committing to Water. (you can do your donations with $5 weekly, or $20 a month, or a $240 donation for the whole year–whatever is best for your budgets). We will not bombard with emails–but if you want monthly or weekly reminders to donate we will do that. If you don’t do online giving, and would like to mail in checks, you can still do that by making checks payable to Charity Global with Water For Christmas in the memo line. (mailed to 150 Varick St. 5th Floor New York, NY 10013.) I will even send you a set of 12 envelopes if you want to do a monthly $20 donation that way.

We will have a counter showing how close we are to getting 300 people.

There’s a new blog badge for the 300 Voices…use it if you want.

Anyone can join us. Talk about it. Blog about it. I know many of us who participated in WFC 2008 were having a hard time shaking it. A hard time letting it go. So this is for you. But even if you were not a part of WFC at all but would like Water to be one of the things you give to in 2009, you can still join us now.

At this point, all it means is a $20/month commitment. The giving is just to force a us to put action behind our causes. And provide clean water for thousands in the process. And then ideally in November 2009, we have people whose treasure has followed their heart and they are ready to go. We reach 300 times more people with awareness about clean water. The money is multiplied. And clean water will erupt from the dirt of Africa’s floor.

We will be one voice. 300 strong. For clean water. For life.

By signing up you are simply saying, “Water matters.” And we believe that enough to give $20 of my treasure each month. It’s that simple.

I want to make it clear that this is merely part of who we are. It’s simply part of loving people the way Jesus taught us to. We cannot love thirsty people without giving them water to drink.

I wouldn’t do this if I wasn’t confident in you guys. I’ve talked to you on the email, on the blogs, in the churches, at the schools. I’ve heard the stories of others that I don’t know. And I just believe there is a force here. A force we can combine and channel. And use to make big impact.

I’m so excited to partner, to team up. 300 times.

Now there will be resources available and developed throughout the year to help us all at WFC time. But right now, I want to see if we can build a team of 300. Simply 300 people willing to give to Water throughout the year. $20 a month.

So. You want in?

Go. Sign up. We’ll add your name to the growing list in the sidebar. (we have to input them manually so it may take a couple hours)

(There will be continued updates about all the WFC wells throughout the year. It looks like I may personally be on the ground in Liberia to report back to you about how the Water money is changing and saving lives. And clarify further why we can’t stop. Why we must keep it fresh on our hearts and minds. Even if it’s only $20/month. Times 300. )

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(photo taken by charity: water staff in Liberia.)

15 Responses to 300 Voices.

  1. Candi says:

    Sounds like a plan to me!!!!!!!! 🙂 AND YOU being 30 today???!!!! How appropriate!! How selfless to post about so many in need while this day should be all about YOU!! Happy Birthday Jody!! I am off to Fl. today but I will be praying for you to feel loved and appreciated for the loving child of God you are!!!! Hope you have a great 30th!!!!!!! : – ) I’ll catch up with you when I return!!!!! Remember, it’s only a number!! You are one GREAT looking 30 year old, whew!!!

  2. Dianne says:

    Yes, Happy 30th Birthday, Jody!
    Donation is in the mail.
    Once again, thanks for taking this project further. I know that this will work…beyond your dreams.
    Blessings,
    Dianne S

  3. Mark says:

    Jody
    I have been watching your blog for a while now. I have also been trying to figure out how to give, what amount, where to, I believe God has answered two small prayers with this idea of yours. Mine of how to be generous in my poverty and yours in adding one more voice to what needs to happen not only in Africa but in the world and that is for people to care about what happens to other people.

    So I thank you and prayer the number doesn’t stop at one team of 300 but many.

    Mark Johnson

  4. Lisa says:

    Signed up and donated – will announce at church this weekend and let customers at the deli know……
    PS HAPPY 30th!

  5. Great idea. I will talk to my husband. But in the meantime, happy birthday.

  6. pam says:

    Giving life on the day you were given life.

    What a great day to launch!

    Happy Birthday!

  7. Julie says:

    Happy 30th! I challenged my fb friends to step up and donate … I want 30 for your 30th! Hey is there a Water for All Seasons group on fb? It could get a little confusing for those that weren’t involved in Water for Christmas.

  8. Happy Birthday! What a way to celebrate – by giving to others!
    As soon as i emptied my change jar at Christmas, i had started to fill it up again, pouncing on every little quarter, dime and even penny i found laying around the house – shouting “Water 4 Christmas Money!!!”
    my kids would say “i thought that was over”
    to which i replied “but this is the start for next year!!!”

    Thank you for keeping this dream alive!

    Best wishes on your birthday

    ~Dreamer~

  9. Andrea H. says:

    Happy Birthday!

    I copied your post to my blog (hope that is ok)
    I also signed up to donate as our adoption is taking longer than expected and therefore freeing up some funds

    Thanks!!!!
    Andrea H.

  10. hi there,
    courtney cassada’s friend here.
    Just read your blog and profile. Very cool.
    I think we’d be friends 🙂 We’re a little bit “ruined”, too. In fact, we also use that word! (I also use the word “toast”.)
    We pastor a crew of about 250 20’s and 30’s at a large church near Milwaukee. I’ll tuck your 300 person challenge away. We’re trying to figure out where “our” money is going this year, and it alway goes to water, along with other justice work stateside and abroad. We’re currently working on a guatemala city project (water). I’ll talk to my hubby.
    Good work, sister. And Happy Birthday!
    Grace and Shalom to you.

  11. May I add this posting to my blog rather then writing my own on ‘300 voices’?

  12. jodylanders says:

    yes, anyone can use this post…thanks for spreading the word.
    Thank you!

  13. beccy says:

    There is something wrong with the sign up page and the form keeps jumping so you can’t read it when you try to fill it out. Thanks for creating opportunities and Happy Birthday (a little late!)

  14. vanessa says:

    Great job Jody, I just signed up! Glad to be one of the 300 🙂 Posting this on my blog! Happy Birthday!

  15. Bruce says:

    I like it! Go, girl! And happy birthday.

    Where do you get the pictures from Liberia? I hope our missions team is aware of the wells about to be dug in that needy country where we as a church already have some investment.

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