After drilling more than 30,000 "Jesus Wells" and giving out some 58,000 water filters since the turn of the century, Gospel for Asia (GFA) is now supplying 37.5 million people with safe drinking water in what the missions group calls the world's thirstiest continent – Asia.
With Asia being home to six out of ten people on the planet, GFA World focused its faith-based mission on helping the millions of water-deprived families across the continent by providing them with reliable drinking water through its deep wells and BioSand filters.
Last year, the Texas-based nonprofit ramped up its efforts by using only local (Asian) workers – many walking from village to village – and drilled 4,856 new "Jesus Wells" while handing out 12,243 new water filters … mostly in communities where waterborne diseases were rife.
Meeting dire needs
In addition to his mission agency delivering the gospel message to millions throughout Asia who haven't heard it, GFA founder Dr. K.P. Yohannan is dedicated to meeting other dire needs.
"In the world's thirstiest continent, GFA World workers and churches are committed to meeting people's most vital physical need – safe drinking water," Yohannan proclaimed in a recent news release.
His Christian organization just released its report, "Don't Drink the Water (Unless You Know What's in It)," which details information and many critical stats relating to Asia's water problems, including the fact that one in three people worldwide lacks access to safe drinking water. It also notes that the United Nation forecasts 5.7 billion people will be affected by water shortages by 2050.
GFA also stressed that Asia is not the only place where safe drinking water is a problem.
"In the U.S., as many as 63 million people – nearly one in every five Americans – have been exposed to potentially unsafe drinking water," the GFA World report revealed – noting lead and arsenic contamination as the main culprits.
The faith-based mission agency also cited U.N. data warning that the demand of water is likely to rise by more than 50% in 20 years.
"This desperate situation is especially acute in Asia, where millions of families get their drinking water from the only source available to them – often a dirty river or stagnant pond, which are breeding grounds for parasites and deadly bacteria," Yohannan explained.
Typhoid, hepatitis A and diarrhea were also mentioned as fatal diseases contracted by contaminated drinking water, while the CDC (Centers for Disease Control) was noted as reporting that nearly 2,200 children die daily from diarrhea.
GFA's goal is for people to see God's "love in action" through its safe water project.
"In one community, the local pastor began praying for a new well when the old village water source dried up, forcing villagers to trek every day to the river," the agency shared from its report. "Days later, a team arrived to drill a new Jesus Well. Although skeptical at first, locals soon realized the new well was heaven-sent."
20 years and counting
At the turn of the century, GFA has changed lives with water, and continues to do so.
"Beginning with the first well in the year 2000, Jesus Wells – up to 1,500 feet in depth – tap deep underground reserves and bring year-round, clean water to thousands of villages across Asia, [with] each well supplying hundreds of people on average and providing a central community gathering place," GFA recounted. "Because local people receive training to maintain the wells, the water keeps flowing, [as] one team recently found a Jesus Well still going strong after 20 years."
Image above compliments of Gospel for Asia.