Ryan Hreljac


One day in January 1998, Ryan was sitting in his Grade One classroom in Canada. His teacher, Mrs. Prest, explained that people were sick and some were even dying because they didn’t have clean water. She told the class that some people walked for hours in Africa and sometimes it was just to get dirty water.

Ryan thought: All I had to do was take 10 steps from my classroom to get to the drinking fountain and I had clean water. Before that day in school, I figured everyone lived like me. When I found out this wasn’t the case, I decided I had to do something about it.

So, Ryan went home and begged my mom and dad to help. After a few days, they told him he could do extra chores to earn the $70 he thought would build a well. He thought that’s all it would take to solve the world’s water problem. He worked for four months to earn his first $70. Then he learned that it was actually going to cost $2,000 to build a well in a place like Uganda. He also learned that the problem was way bigger than he realised.

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