Westminster College students put on race for water

Westminster College students are giving a new meaning to the phrase “running water.” A group of students, staff, faculty and administration are putting on a 5 and 10K run at 8:30 a.m. April 14 to raise money as Westmo for H2Ope, a campaign to bring fresh drinking water to people in developing nations.

The run will start at the top of the hill near Westminster Hall and the Columns, with registration beginning a half hour beforehand. All proceeds from the entry fees —$15 for the 5K and $25 for the 10K — will go to Charity: Water, a non-profit group that provides wells for people in developing countries, who would otherwise have to spend hours of their day hiking through miles of dangerous terrain to collect dirty water that might make them sick.

Westmo for H20pe wants to change that. The group has pledged to raise $20,000 this semester for Charity: Water; an amount they say would build four wells in four communities, providing water for 1,000 people or 200 families. The group’s student leader, Kenna Cornelson, said that they’ve raised about $9,000. While that gives them just 19 days to make up the remaining $11,000, she is not too discouraged.

“Overall when you look at it, if we raise $10,000 total and get half of our goal, we’re building two wells in developing countries, so that’s still amazing,” said Cornelson.

Cornelson became interested in bringing clean water access to the developing world when her high school, Casady School in Oklahoma City, launched a similar campaign when Cornelson was a freshman at Westminster. Now a junior, Cornelson helped organize Westmo in October and finally launched the fundraising campaign Feb. 1. They’ve raised what they have so far through private donations and fundraising events such as this weekend’s upcoming race. They’ve also partnered with the Market Street Subway, and will receive $1 for every footlong sub and 50 cents for every large drink sold between 4-8 p.m.

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