Myers Fourth Graders Raise Money for Sudan

Project Idea Comes From Book by Salva Dut


Fourth grade students from Tommie Murray’s class work together to count the change collected at the elementary school for their project “Change Changes South Sudan.”

“I overcame all the difficult situations for my past because of the hope and perseverance that I had. I would not have made it without these two things.”

Salva Dut, organizer of Water for South Sudan


In Myers Elementary School, fourth grade students are raising money to build clean water wells for the people in South Sudan.

It all started when fourth teacher, Mrs. Crownover, read the book A Long Walk to Water to her class. The story talks about Salva Dut and the non-profit organization he formed, Water for South Sudan. The organization drills wells for clean water in South Sudan.

After reading the book Mrs. Crownover’s class suggested the other fourth grade classes read the book, and they and decided to raise money for clean water in South Sudan. Eighty-three cents of every dollar donated goes directly to building a well. The students are planning to raise $15,000 so our Myers Elementary can build a well. If they raise $5,000 Myers can sponsor a well.

“The book was powerful,” said fourth grader, Caedon Poe.

Either way the Bellwood-Antis school name will be on the well and will give children the opportunity to drink clean, fresh water. The kids will also be allowed to go to school instead of having to walk miles to get one bucket of filthy, warm, wormy water.

The whole project is completely student-run. The kids drew all of the posters promoting the fundraiser and wrote all of the letters to students, parents, and sponsors themselves. The students also got Roaring Spring to donate the water jugs which they are using to hold all the change they are collecting both at Myers and at the BA Middle and High School.

The students asked about 20 businesses to help and collected pocket change from May 19 – May 23. Aiden Reimer and Darian Gonder wrote a pamphlet that was handed to many students, parents, and faculty, including the BA school board at a recent meeting.

The teachers also looked at this opportunity as a way to tie in their persuasive writing unit.

“It is nice seeing kids grab a hold of something and not just listen to the text but respond to it in a global way. The biggest thing is seeing a connection that causes a response,” said fourth grade teacher Tommie Murray.

“It makes me proud because you realize what you can do for others and you realize you’re not alone,” Poe added.