Mel and Jack’s Walk for Water

Mel and Jack are parishioners at English Martyr’s parish in Reading. They are taking part in CAFOD’s Walk for Water 10,000 step challenge for the 40 days of Lent .

Mel told me about why she and Jack decided to fundraise for CAFOD.

“In this modern time no human being should be deprived of clean water.  CAFOD’s campaign ‘WALK FOR WATER’ really touched me and motivated me to do my part.  Abdella’s story in the campaign was very convincing.  I have never done a challenge before and Abdella’s story really moved me to the core so I decided to give it a go.  I do not regret it.  As I do my walk every day I picture Abdella going to collect water with a smiling face which gives me the strength to walk and get more donation for this worthy cause.  The generosity and support of my families and friends even from outside the UK has been phenomenal and I thank them immensely.



My husband Jack recently attended a CAFOD conference.  At the end of the conference he looked different to me and I asked him what the CAFOD conference was all about?

His reply was “WATER!” and I said “What Water?” to which he replied “Clean water for people” and to get clean water for people CAFOD was organizing a challenge of completing 10,000 steps each day for 40 days of Lent.  Together we saw the CAFOD WALK FOR WATER movie on the website about the struggle for water.  It shocked and saddened me that in this modern time there is no clean water available to many people in the world – which is surely one’s right as a human.  It hurt me a lot.

I said to Jack “I WILL DO THE CHALLENGE”.  He asked if I was sure, I replied “YES – provided you will walk with me” as I suffer from arthritis in my left foot and experience imbalance.   This was just a start but I knew I could not do it without my families and friends’ support from here and from all over the world.

I immediately wrote to all to say that I would like to do the challenge and asked if they would support me and the response was an overwhelming yes.  I was very touched and one of my friends even said you do 1000 steps a day I will still sponsor.  I did not hesitate and in fact started my practice walks two weeks earlier but the money just kept coming even without me starting and before the official start of the challenge on Ash Wednesday.

So here I am 3 weeks in having very successfully done 248,468 steps and have raised nearly £3000 which was my target, all for a good cause.  On my walk I have been able to experience God’s creation, beauty, birdsong, new growth and enjoyed stopping by to say hello to people, making new friends from different parts of the world. It is so exciting, wonderful and beautiful.

Going down memory lane to my younger days I recalled happy times with my new found English friends helping me to integrate into a new culture and me sharing mine. These are roads that I have not taken for years moreover just concentrating on  Abdella walking 10 hours a day just to get water is making me very determined to walk and  complete the challenge.

The knowledge that my family and friends will support with their words of encouragement helps me to complete the walk and I am determined to reach my target of £3000 and more

My walk is dedicated to Abdella and the many others like him.  Abdella is a young man who lives in a remote community in Ethiopia, he begins his walk for water in the dark before sun rises in order to avoid the intense heat as this is one of the hottest places on earth. 

So I ask you very humbly to sponsor me and write a note of encouragement which helps me to walk.

Even as little as £5 can go a long way for this very worthy cause and help to support families living in poverty overseas. You can donate to Mel and Jacks ‘s just giving page here.

2 thoughts on “Mel and Jack’s Walk for Water

  1. Thank you Jo for what you are doing, much appreciated. God Bless you and your team for giving everyone an opportunity to do something good this Lent and come closer to God by helping someone like Abdella and others that do not have clean water. x Mel

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