Monthly Archives: July 2011

PUR genius

We've mentioned before our outstanding corporate partner, Procter and Gamble (P&G). And maybe you even heard about their big milestone a couple of months ago: providing their 3 billionth liter of clean drinking water to the developing world with PUR water packets in partnership with World Vision.

But what you might not have heard is the fascinating story of how P&G's PUR "clean water venture" got started.

A new hope through independence

It’s a long journey from the backyard barbecues and fireworks of our own Fourth of July festivities to the Republic of South Sudan, a new country that will be born in just days from today on July 9. I’m willing to bet, though, that our traditional summer celebration will seem downright routine compared to the life-changing nature of South Sudan’s first birthday.

At first glance, it may seem as though future citizens of South Sudan don't have much to be grateful for or much to celebrate. They will be receiving the poorest corner of one of the poorest countries on earth -- a place beset by hunger, disease, and war. According to a 2007 government study (pdf), mothers in Southern Sudan are more likely to die in childbirth than anywhere else on earth. Another report indicated that more than half of the population lives below the poverty line.

So why do the Sudanese celebrate? Maybe they’re celebrating a fresh start. Maybe it’s that most South Sudanese long to write a new, unbloodied page in their history, to cultivate a renewed community and land for themselves and their children. Maybe it's the hope that, on this day, all the problems facing South Sudan will be put aside so that everyone can celebrate this moment to start a new future together. Frankly, that kind of hope leaves most of our Fourth of July celebrations in the shade.

12 challenges for your summer bucket list

When I was in college, I spent my summers visiting family and friends, journeying on cross-country road trips, catching up on extracurricular reading, or traveling internationally (if I could afford it). I always started off my summer vacation with a desire to make my summer really count -- to do something purposeful and intentional to help other people. But after a few weeks in the sun, I often resorted to all my summer norms.

College students aren't getting away with that mentality so easily anymore -- not with resources like our World Vision ACT:S Summer Adventure Bucket List. It's 12 challenges meant to get you out of the house and experience the world around you.