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Girl Scouts walk with water for Tanzania

Published: Tuesday, May 14, 2013 9:16 a.m. CDT
Caption
(Photo provided)
Sycamore Girl Scouts practice carrying water on their heads as women in Africa do. The scouts will participate in a Walk with Water event May 19 to raise money for Tanzania Development Support.
Caption
(Photo provided)
Dr. Teresa Wasonga demonstrates the art of carrying water on her head for Girl Scouts in Sycamore. The Girl Scouts will participate in a Walk with Water event May 19 to raise money for Tanzania Development Support.

SYCAMORE – The Sycamore Girl Scouts of the Double Tree Service Unit will participate in a Walk with Water event at 3 p.m. Sunday, May 19, at Sycamore Lake. Girl Scout Troop 654, which is hosted by St. Peter’s Episcopal Church in Sycamore, is working with Tanzania Development Support to coordinate this event.

For the past several months the scouts have been studying the importance of water in daily life and its scarcity in some countries around the world. The studies included a demonstration by Dr. Teresa Wasonga, a professor in the Northern Illinois University Department of Education and a native of Kenya. Wasonga recalled her childhood experiences of walking long distances to find water and carry it home to her family.

She demonstrated how African girls and women carry the container of water on their heads, often while also carrying a baby strapped to their backs, a basket of food in one hand and guiding another small child with the other hand. She described the perils they encounter, such as navigating barefoot on very rough terrain and warding off snakes in their path. She pointed out that many young girls are unable to attend school because fetching water for their family every day is more important. After Wasonga’s presentation, the Girl Scouts practiced carrying water containers on their heads.

The Walk with Water event offers the girls the opportunity to experience walking with water like they do in Africa. It will also be a fundraising event for Tanzania Development Support, a not-for-profit organization headquartered in DeKalb. TDS is seeking donations for the construction of a library/community resource center for children and residents in the village of Nyegina in Tanzania. While there is no fee for participating in this water walk event, the Girl Scouts are asked to raise donations for the library construction. In this way the Girl Scouts will be able to help children in Tanzania who do not have ready access to water and who may not be able to go to school.

For additional information or to participate, contact Carly Flagg at 224-645-6893.

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