Birmingham Citadel raises £21,000 for African water project
published on 22 Jun 2015
Birmingham Citadel Salvation Army has reached their £21,000 fundraising target to provide fresh water to rural communities in Zimbabwe.
The project was launched in April 2014 with a goal of installing pipes to pump fresh water to Goora, the home village of Davison Muropa, a member of Birmingham Citadel; Davison’s family still lives in Goora.
In response to the appeal the church family in Birmingham dug deep into their pockets quickly raising the £15,000 target which was increased to £21,000 in December 2014.
Just a year after the fundraising was launched, construction on the new water system has begun. The network of pipes and pumps will supply fresh water for six villages, benefitting over 1200 people including a primary and secondary school.
Major Steve White, church leader of Birmingham Citadel Salvation Army, said: “Everyone from the youngest to the eldest had a ‘Goora Box’ for their donations and some even paid by monthly standing order.
“Folk ran half marathons; one did the London 100 mile bike ride. We had a Goora Bake Well – a massive cake sale after our Sunday service, and our CAMEO (Come and Meet Each Other) group donated proceeds from their weekly market stall. Part of the collection from our annual Symphony Hall Carol Service also went to the project.”
The people of Goora were relying on one borehole which provided clean water to a wide area. It would often break down, leaving the community with no source of clean water. As a result, the women of the villages would have to wake up very early in the morning and spend many hours in search of water. The water shortage also impacted the local girls who would have to miss school in order to find water for their families. But now construction of the new water system has begun, there is hope for Goora and the surrounding communities.
As an international Church and charity The Salvation Army has a strong presence in Zimbabwe. Their work includes 431 churches, four hospitals and 106 schools and training centres.
The Salvation Army’s International Development team in the UK have been working with Salvationists in Zimbabwe to involve and support members of the local community in Goora. Villagers have helped with the construction of the water system and a Village Water Committee has been established to spearhead the project and take over responsibility for maintaining the water pipes once they are up and running.
This international project is testament to The Salvation Army's united mission across the world to care for people who are vulnerable or in need in every community.
“We feel ecstatic, overwhelmed, humbled,” said Major Steve. “Most of all we have a real sense of gratitude to God for the way in which the church family has responded in love and faith to the project.”
This year The Salvation Army is celebrating 150 years of Christian service and is still at the heart of community today. Working in 126 countries worldwide The Salvation Army offers friendship, practical help and support for people at all levels of need.