Walking for water: BCMS holds 6K to support World Vision



The 3.7-mile trek served as a lesson to students at Brownstown Central Middle School.

In developing countries, it typically takes 6 kilometers to get to a source of water. Many times, that water isn’t suitable for drinking, but it’s the only water available.

On Friday, students and faculty at the middle school participated in a 6K run/walk to raise awareness about the issue while also helping raise funds for World Vision’s clean water initiative.

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World Vision is a Christian humanitarian organization dedicated to working with children, families and their communities worldwide to help them reach their full potential by tackling the causes of poverty and injustice, according to worldvision.org.

World Vision is the largest nongovernmental provider of clean water in the world, according to the company’s website.

There are 785 million people on the planet who don’t have access to clean water, but World Vision’s goal is to bring clean water to everyone by 2030.

Students at the middle school have engaged in multiple fundraising opportunities over the past month, including the World Vision Dance this month and now the 6K, to help raise money to donate to the organization.

“We had done a 5K as a school a couple years ago just to promote physical fitness. In the back of our minds, we wanted to do something similar again this year,” Principal Doug McClure said. “We started thinking about our 20/20 V.I.S.I.O.N. theme and our partnership with World Vision, and it just seemed natural for us to do this. We wanted to help relate, as best as we could, the experience to our kids.”

According to the school’s page on World Vision’s website at teamworldvision.org/team/bcms2020vision, students had raised $181,484 as of Friday. Donations may still be made at that link.

Twins Shane and Chance Ratliff, seventh-graders at BCMS, were the first two to finish the race.

The two run cross country and track and said the 6K was for a good cause.

“They have to walk so many miles per day just to get water,” Shane said. “A lot of times, it isn’t even clean. Then they have to do it all the way back.”

Chance said it’s important to know that’s how some people live.

“That’s a far travel,” he said. “Going that far to get water isn’t an easy thing to do, especially if it isn’t clean water.”

Eighth-grader Riley Pumphrey was the first girl to finish the race, and she said she enjoyed the course and thought it was a good idea to do it for a cause.

“We’re doing this to help people in different countries get clean water,” she said. “We’re helping people that don’t have what we have, and it’s just a great thing to do.”

Dean of Students Marty Young designed the course, which was about 1.25 miles and spanned the town park and the Brownstown Central High School campus.

Students were required to do at least one lap of the course, but many did two or the full three.

McClure said Young also reached out to fellow teachers to help volunteer, and some of them were spread throughout the course, making sure students were within eyesight at all times.

An officer from the Brownstown Police Department also was on hand to ensure the kids had a safe walk from the middle school to the 6K site.

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