You might have heard that if you become a minimalist or decide to live more simply that you can’t give or receive gifts anymore. I couldn’t find anything in the official be a minimalist rule book about that, so I plan to continue to give and receive.
Living simply and the idea of less is defined differently from person to person, and household to household. Some boycott gifts and holidays all together, others embrace family traditions and completely boycott minimalism during the holidays. I fall somewhere in between. I still give and receive, but very differently than the good old days of credit card debt and thinking there was happiness in stuff.
I’ve been thinking lately about how I really can give love, hope, joy and life. If you are going to give, why not give something simple, helpful, meaningful and really awesome? After much thought and research, I kept coming back to charity: water.
charity: water is a non-profit organization bringing clean and safe drinking water to people in developing nations. That in itself is amazing, but after hearing founder, Scott Harrison talk about their 100% model in Portland last summer, and reading stories from the field, I knew I was hooked.
One in nine people in our world doesn’t have access to water: the most basic of human needs. Something we can’t imagine going 12 hours without.
After Scott’s presentation, I committed to giving up my birthday for charity: water. Instead of cake, gifts or other celebrations, I would ask my friends to make a donation to charity: water. I made the commitment in July and my birthday is in June. So I’ve been waiting. For June. Until now.
What am I waiting for? I’ll still give up my birthday in June, but I am going to start giving to charity: water now in the form of thank you gifts, Valentine gifts, birthday presents and other ways. I am going to give the gift of clean water to people who don’t have enough in the names of my family, friends and clients that do.
Everyone deserves clean water. You know how good that first sip is when you are really thirsty, but clean water in communities that don’t have access means so much more than quenching thirst. It means health, education, life. Water changes everything.
The next gift I am sending to charity: water is from you. I’m sending $100 in your name. I want to give to more people this year than ever before, so that more people will know how grateful I am for what they do and who they are and how much better they make my life. I could make these donations anonymously, but I want to share this work.
90% of the 30,000 deaths that occur every week from unsafe water and unhygienic living conditions are children under five years old.
This is time sensitive. There are solutions for the water crisis. If more people know about the solutions and support them, we can solve the problem faster.
There are so many incredible opportunities to give and help (literally) change the world or a world. What are we waiting for?