One of my favorite things we do at Blood:Water is our house concerts. It is my favorite because it allows us to really build a connection between the host community and Africa. For the second year in a row, we had the privilege of joining together with the Winona Lake community in Indiana to help raise money for Blood:Water.
As I was planning for the event, I started to think about what a community in Africa has in common with a community in Indiana. I thought about my last trip to Zambia and our visit to the Kaloko community. Blood:Water is working to bring clean water to this community of 13,000 people that currently only has two water points. That’s right, only two source of water for 13,000 people. Because of the water scarcity, people are forced to walk miles for water and even drink from contaminated sources.
I then looked at the population of Winona Lake. To my surprise, it also has a population of 13,000. As I spoke to the crowd, I asked them how their life would be different if these two communities of the exact size switched places. Wouldn’t they want someone to come along and help? And wouldn’t they want the people to feel an urgency in doing so? We all know Africa is a very big place. But it’s a very big place that is filled with great communities, just like the one we were in at Winona Lake. For those in attendance, the message was clear. Winona Lake wasn’t trying to save all of Africa on Saturday; Winona Lake was helping their neighbor. Isn’t that what we are called to do?
Winona Lake wasn’t just a another house concert; it was a reminder that communities in Africa and communities in Indiana are more similar than we might think. I’m grateful that Winona Lake leaned into this urgency and helped out a community thousands of miles away. And they did so in a big way, raising over $31,000 for Africa.
What can your community do?