Students on Geneva College’s campus participated in the Be Hope to Her (BH2O+) event on Tuesday, April 19 in cooperation with the anti-poverty, non-profit organization Nuru International. The goal was to raise funds and awareness of water and sanitation issues in areas of extreme poverty as participants walked a mile to fetch water in the manner of African women who do this daily.
This year, BH20+ was organized by sophomore human services major Faith Lambert. “I am passionate about Africa, just hearing about what the women and children have to go through on a daily basis is heartbreaking,” she said. “I think it is a very important event because just the little impact we have here at Geneva is a lot to a woman or child in Africa. I know for me, it humbles me when I feel like I'm having a bad day or not wanting to drink ice-cold, clean water.”
Junior writing major Sarah Felton also participated in the event last year. “Be Hope to Her, for me, was a way to stop simply hearing about how bad some people in the world have it and get depressed about it, but to be someone who does something about it,” she said. “It's a very tangible, hands-on sort of thing. The first step to fixing a problem is knowing about it, and you just can't fully know a problem until you've walked in their shoes, with their buckets on your head.”
“I have learned to roll a kenga (the cloth cushion between your head and the bucket) and what 30 pounds of water feels like balanced on my head,” said Felton, “but more than that, I have learned the power of God working through a few committed people. Last year, BH20+'s first year at Geneva, I thought, ‘I'm a no-name underclassman at a small college in western Pennsylvania. I can't do anything significant.’ Then four other girls and I organized and ran BH20+, and it was a great realization that there really isn't anyone God can't use.”
Geneva College is a comprehensive Christian college of the arts, sciences and professional studies. Founded in the tradition of the Reformed Christian faith, Geneva prepares students to serve Christ in all areas of society: work, family and the church. Geneva College’s philosophy of education is based on the Foundational Concepts of Christian Higher Education. Geneva is a founding member of the Council for Christian Colleges & Universities (CCCU).
Geneva students have the opportunity each summer to attend Au Sable Institute of Environmental Studies to develop practical methods of caring for the environment.