Could you live on 4 liters of water a day? That’s the equivalent of about a gallon. And when it comes down to it, that’s just not very much water. Unfortunately, that’s about all the clean water millions of people in the world have access to – not just for drinking or washing or cooking, but for everything they do. 4 liters. 1 gallon. DigDeep.org thinks that’s wrong – and so do I. That’s why I agreed to take DigDeep’s 4Liters Challenge. I want to help them raise awareness — and money — so more people can have access to clean, safe water.
To take the challenge, I filled up four liter-size bottles of water and used them over the course of a 24-hour period. In doing so, here’s what I realized:
* I would use more than the water I had all day to flush my toilet just once (but most people usually flush their toilets once an hour – you definitely couldn’t do that on 4 liters a day).
* I could wash my face and hands only twice in the day. I could wet a wash cloth and wipe off my body, but definitely not take a shower. Shampoo my hair? No.
* On normal days, I use just about 4 liters of water every day to make a pot of coffee, 4 or 5 cups of tea, wash the fruit I eat for breakfast and the salad ingredients I eat for lunch. During the Challenge, that could have used up all the water I had, so I cut out the coffee, made only two cups of tea, and wiped off my fruit instead of washing it.
* Once I used my water for tea, coffee, and food washing, there was no water left over to boil water for rice or pasta, to make soup, or just to drink with some ice and a squeeze of lemon and lime.
* There definitely was not enough water to wash dishes, let alone run the dishwasher.
* Laundry? Forget about it. Housecleaning? Nope.
* Lawn? Garden? No water for watering outdoors or in.
You’ll notice that the list of what I COULD NOT do on 4 liters of water a day is much longer than what I could do. Lucky for me, I suffered this water scarcity for only one day.
But what if this were your reality day after day after day?
For millions of people, it is. DigDeep is trying to change that. The organization defends access to water as a “basic human right,” says the organization’s energetic founder, George McGraw. DigDeep also helps communities build sustainable water projects that improve water access for the people who need it. And of course, DigDeep runs the 4liters challenge to educate water-rich people like you and me about this precious resource.
I hope you’ll take the 4liters challenge, and I also hope you’ll help support DigDeep financially. The group is asking for a small $40 tax-deductible contribution, but you don’t have to donate to participate in the challenge.
By the way, while you’re at it, invite your friends to participate, too.
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