12 February 2015

UMCOR Advance Brings Potable Water to Kentucky

Red Bird Mission helps improve the lives of its community members in remote Appalachia through compassionate, Christ-centered service which includes educational, health and outreach ministries.
In an effort to reduce the health risks associated with being exposed to, or drinking contaminated water, the United Methodist Committee on Relief (UMCOR) is supporting Red Bird Mission (RBM), a ministry within the Red Bird Missionary Annual Conference in Kentucky, in building a communal water kiosk that will provide clean water to 6,000 people living in remote Appalachia.

Clay County, Kentucky, the location of the soon-to-be-constructed water kiosk, was recently dubbed by The New York Times as the most difficult place to live in America. The county’s median household income is half the national average; diarrheal, heart and lung disease are rampant, and a recent state-wide appraisal of factors contributing to health, including potable water resources, ranks Clay as the most disadvantaged of Kentucky’s 120 counties.

In addition, recent water testing samples drawn from local creeks and streams contained bacteria and nitrate counts that exceeded the allowable Environmental Protection Agency limits for safety. These tested areas are off-shoots of Red Bird River, a local source for drinking water, swimming and fishing.

RBM will partner with the University of Tennessee and Appalachia Community Health & Disaster Readiness Project to address community needs and raise awareness to promote healthy living.

UMCOR’s support of the water kiosk construction will secure access to a clean water supply at a centrally located community and help to prevent waterborne disease through hygiene education and training. Support projects like this one with your gifts to UMCOR Water and Sanitation, Advance #3020600.

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