After 2 years of traveling from Colorado to Austin, Texas for tennis camp I've realized that more than my tennis game was affected in those warm weeks in Austin, Texas. Austin Tennis Academy has been instrumental in a fund raising campaign for A Glimmer of Hope, an Austin based non-profit organization, responsible for building water wells, schools and hospitals in rural Ethiopia. A good friend of mine, Breck Spencer, had the privilege of visiting Ethiopia this past summer and witnessed first hand what the people in this particular village must go through every day just to get unclean water for their daily use. Breck decided to give it a try himself and was humbled by the weight of the water and the climb that must be done twice every day! He was also humbled by the weight of what he could possibly do to give these people help with their daily living conditions. Breck organized ATA's own "Walk for Water"on September 1, 2010. Please check out the video of his walk in Ethiopia: http://www.ourglimmerofhope.org/campaign/ata-walk-water-team-1 and here http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QssICpIhTSg&playnext=1&videos=Z4PyEOOgtbU... The ATA Walk for Water was established with three primary objectives. The first was to raise awareness among kids of the incredible burden their counterparts bear in rural Ethiopia in a daily fight for survival by having them experience hands on what it is like to carry 40lb jugs of water on their backs for 45 minutes or more. Second, the Walk was established to raise money to directly benefit young people in the affected areas by building water wells, schools and health clinics. 60 ATA kids experienced the back breaking journey by walking a two mile course through the hills of Austin Texas in 100 degree heat. As part of last year's campaign, this group of students raised enough to build a school and one water well in the community of Wuhdet. The arm of Austin Tennis Academy has reached up into the Rocky Mountains and has given me the hope that Grand Junction, Colorado tennis will join A Glimmer of Hope by raising enough money through our own "Walk for Water" to help fund the health care facility for the village of Wuhdet. November 13th, 2010, 35 Grand Junction junior tennis players will simulate the daily walk by carrying 40lb. water jugs on their backs, held by ropes. Please help by pledging at least $50 to help a community of 7000 people witness the power of health care and us to reach our goal! A Glimmer of Hope lifts women and children out of extreme poverty in rural Ethiopia. Using an entrepreneurial model developed by the organization, it provides clean water, schools, health clinics and microfinance loans. 100% of all donations go directly to funding these projects, more than 4,000 to date. Over the last 10 years, A Glimmer of Hope has improved 2.5 million lives. Through photos, video and GPS coordinates, donors personally experience how their contributions, large and small, are changing lives. By supporting my campaign, you can choose to receive email updates throughout the year on the project we complete together and the lives touched by it. A Glimmer of Hope listens to and partners with communities to build and maintain projects, ensuring sustainability. Recently, founders Donna and Philip Berber were ranked #6 globally on Barron's list of The Best 25 Givers, based on effectiveness and impact. I greatly appreciate your support of my campaign. On behalf of those whose lives are forever transformed by your generosity, thank you. E.Parker Hegstrom Class of 2011 Grand Junction, Colorado USA
Watch this video to learn more about A Glimmer of Hope.