Activity time: 20 minutes
Materials for Activity
- Newsprint, markers and tape
Information from the United States Geological Survey (USGS)
Preparation for Activity
- Visit the USGS website and research "Water Information By State" to learn where the drinking water in your area comes from and what pollutants and other hazards do or may affect the water available in your area. Print information to share with the group.
- Find out about local or regional water issues. Identify agencies or organizations-including your congregational social action or environmental justice committee-working on these issues. Gather information that might help the group choose an action.
- Optional: Invite a guest who is active in local or regional water resource protection to come speak with the group. Prepare the guest to tell the group about their project and answer participants' questions.
Description of Activity
Engage participants in learning about their own drinking water and choosing an action to help protect the local or regional water source(s).
Invite the group to brainstorm where they think drinking water for the congregation and their homes comes from. Gather some guesses, then share the information you obtained from the USGS website. Ask what the group thinks might be pollutants or other hazards affecting or threatening the drinking water. Then, tell them about the pollutants and other hazards that do or could affect your local water supply.
You may be in an area with little or no pollution; if that is the case, point out that a lack of concern about local water pollution is a privilege many in the world do not share. However, remind the group that because of global warming and climate change, fresh, clean drinking water may one day become scarce for all life on our planet.
Brainstorm ways the group might advocate for cleaning up pollution or raising awareness of other, impending problems. Or, if you have invited a guest to talk about a local water protection initiative, ask them to tell the group about their project and answer participants' questions. Close by identifying and assigning next steps to move forward on an action plan the group wants to do.