Nisha Varghese saw something that bothered her so she decided to take action. After seeing an episode of The Oprah Winfrey Show, this 20 year old South African woman vowed to raise funds to build a well for people in need.
I met Nisha through Twitter and after reading her blog, I was struck by the simplicity of what she was doing and thought how different the world would be if more people took action on things they care about rather than just talking about it.
I asked Nisha if she would mind answering a few questions for Eventprov.
Jenise: Can you please tell us a little about yourself?
Nisha: I am the oldest of three children I have a brother and a sister. I blog for a living and I’m keeping a journal of my fundraising experience and hope to turn it into a book once this is all over. I have met some wonderful people whom I would like to share with the world.
Nisha: I was watching The Oprah Winfrey Show on which a young girl by the name of Kendall Ciesemier was a guest. There was nothing that was outwardly extraordinary about Kendall – she had ten fingers and toes just like the rest of us – but, one day after watching an Oprah Winfrey special: on the AIDS epidemic in Africa she took all the money that she had, put it in and envelope and sent it to WorldVision to ‘adopt’ an orphan and in 2007 Kendall founded an organization called Kids Caring 4 Kids – an organization which aims to raise awareness and money for AIDS orphans and other highly vulnerable kids in Africa and to inspire kids to care for others in need – which she certainly did.
Kendall through her selfless acts reflected to me how great I could be if I could just stop thinking that the world owed me something and in that spirit I created my Clean Water For All Campaign – which began on the 5th March 2010 and ends on the 5th March 2012.
Jenise: What is The Water Project and what got you interested in it?
Nisha: The Water Project, Inc. is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that’s bringing relief to communities around the world who suffer needlessly from a lack of access to clean water and I got interested in it after I had gotten bitten by the giving bug – on my 18th birthday I decided to give the money that I received from my family to UNICEF and subsequently started raising money for them and a year after I failed at that I went in search of another worthy cause to support which is when I stumbled onto The Water Project.I read somewhere that every 20 seconds a child dies from a water-related disease and I found that to be to totally unecessary. That’s why I chose to build a well.
Jenise: Have you been using social media to spread the word?
Nisha: Yes I have been using Twitter and Facebook to great effect. I have received donations from all corners of the globe.
Jenise: Are you getting close to your goal?
Nisha: I have $2 519.22 to raise to reach my goal of $6 500 – the average cost of building a well.
Jenise: Once you reach your goal, what will be next for you?
After I reach my goal I would love to put all my energies into Virginia’s Sandwich Run – a project I started dedicated to our late housekeeper – Virginia – which aims to raise enough money to make 48 sandwiches a week for the people in our current housekeeper’s neighbourhood.
Jenise: Do you have any advice for others who want to do something to help make the world a better place?
Nisha: Do your research and make sure the charity you support is registered and then get the word out about what you’re trying to do. How can people find out more about The Water Project
You can visit http://thewaterproject.org/ or http://www.firstgiving.com/fundraiser/nisha-varghese/nishavarghese (my fundraising page)