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Water in the Desert

In the occupied territory of Gaza, 92 percent of the water is unfit for human consumption. The congregation of Alliance of Baptists, Watts Street Church in Durham, NC, hearing of the need for safe drinking water for children in Gaza, embarked upon an effort to help address that need.

The effort which church members dubbed  “Water in the Desert” set a goal of $4,000 to purchase a desalination unit for a UN school in Gaza. Members were asked to make either a contribution of a fixed amount or a pledge related to the number of times they turned on the tap in their homes for one week. The effort resulted in $9,209.30 in contributions from youth and adults. This, along with a contribution from an anonymous donor, will purchase desalination units to supply the needs of up to 2,400 children in Gaza schools.

Since the current siege of Gaza began, over 240,000 children, women and men have been displaced from their homes. Most have sought refuge in UN schools. This has severely overtaxed the desalination systems already in existence. At this time it is not known whether any of these systems in the UN schools have been damaged or destroyed.

In spite of the uncertainty as to whether any of these purification systems have been affected, Watts Street encourages other Alliance of Baptist churches to consider similar efforts to provide safe drinking water. Members of Watts Street who have visited Gaza in recent times welcome the opportunity to assist in telling other congregations about this need. 

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