To begin this blog series, I want to take the opportunity to acknowledge the ultimate reason why I give — why we all give — to Water for Good: because I want to make a difference.

“I want to make a difference…”

is a phrase that is so often thrown around as to become cliche. Frequently, people who want to make a difference are characterized as naive. It would be understandable to want to move away from the phrase, to shift focus, rather than risk being branded an idealist.

Instead, I think it is time to embrace that characterization, and I think we all should: because wanting to make a difference is important, but even more so because with all of our help, Water for Good IS making a difference.

When I was in college, it was easy to become disheartened at the state of the world. We face a plethora of problems, problems whose varied and byzantine nature makes finding solutions feel far-fetched and out of reach. Yet despite this apparent hopelessness, while drafting my senior thesis, I came upon countless NGOs around the world who, defying the enormity of the tasks facing them, were nonetheless fearlessly tackling these daunting issues: from wealth inequality to chronic water shortage, there were people around the world who weren’t afraid to believe in making a difference. And why should they be? They know what happens when you mix idealism with hard work: change. A chance for a better world. And it was right then that I realized: innocence should never be mischaracterized as naivety; belief in making a difference should never be discounted as impractical.

Water for Good was one of those NGOs I came across and from the start, I was intrigued. A small, Christian organization with a single-country focus and an evidence-based approach that emphasized the value of knowledge in implementing unique solutions to common problems? I knew I had to be involved.

Since joining the team and having the incredible opportunity to be able to see behind the proverbial curtain, I am only more encouraged and my desire to help has only deepened. Water for Good’s team is composed of some of the most dedicated, compassionate, and intelligent people I have ever had the pleasure of meeting. They all, to a one, believe that they can make a difference, both in the Central African Republic, and, as Water for Good grows, in Africa.

I suppose that makes them all a little naive. Or maybe, just maybe, it makes them all heroes. I know which I believe. 

I give to Water for Good because I believe in this work. Because I believe in making a difference. And so, I say to everyone:


Zeus Smith