Local girl raising money for clean water well in Haiti

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EAU CLAIRE, Wis. (WEAU) – A local girl is hoping to raise enough money to build a water-well in Haiti.

12-year-old Maddie Jenson of Elk Mound is inspiring people by wearing the same shirt for 12 days in a row.

The shirt says ‘Team Living Water’, an organization that brings clean water solutions to developing countries.

Maddie’s goal is to raise $5000 which would bring clean water to an entire village in Haiti.

At least 783 million people don’t have access to clean drinking water, according to ‘Living Water International’.

It was during youth group at Harvestime Church in Eau Claire that Maddie was inspired to do something that seemed impossible.

“My grandparents are on a mission trip to Honduras and I was really interested in that stuff since I was little,” said Maddie. “They go all around the world and build wells for poor countries or just countries that don't have clean water.”

And she says with the help of God, she would raise enough money to help the cause.

“I decided to wear my shirt to raise money to build a whole well. They get really sick without clean water and there's been so many kids that died with having dirty water and just having feces and dirt and garbage in their waters and so many of them have died, it’s just sad,” said Maddie.

Maddie’s mom Cathy Jenson was just as inspired by her daughter.

“I'm so proud of Maddie. I just can't believe someone so young would have that kind of passion and the desire to make an impact on the world. I’m so proud of her,” said Cathy.

Cathy said Maddie came up with the idea all by herself nearly two weeks ago, saying she wanted to raise money to go towards Living Water in honor of her grandparents who are traveling in Honduras for mission trips.

“Maddie has worn her jersey every single day, every single day before school and I’ve documented the whole thing on Facebook,” said Cathy. “I've forced her to take it off at night sometimes to let me wash it a couple times.”

Already, there's a plot of land that's been chosen for Maddie's well.

“My grandpa called basically the president of Living Water and asked if he could go on my mission trip and you have to be 14 to go on a mission trip,” said Maddie. “And in 2014, I’ll be 14. That’s when they want to build my well and I’m going to go with my grandparents and my dad and they’ve already picked out a spot they want to build it.”

Cathy said it’s a landfill where around 3000 people surround.

“They have no access to clean water and sometimes they walk up to seven miles a day to get a bucket of water and that’s exactly where they want to take it. Grandpa’s going to take her when she’s old enough to go,” said Cathy.

If Maddie goes over her goal of $5000, the extra funds will still go towards Living Waters to use it on other wells and projects.

If you’d like to donate CLICK HERE or go to http://www.water.cc/cathy-jenson/give-well.

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