Minden-based charity, Help A Village Effort (HAVE), is $5,000 short of its goal of raising $24,000 to help bring clean drinking water to a cyclone-ravaged part of West Bengal, India.

HAVE chair Ron Reid said five community wells, one school water supply, and three water filtration systems for high schools are to be installed. He said HAVE had raised $19,000 of the money needed.

Reid said each well will benefit between 250 and 300 people and each high school filtration system means clean water for 1,200 to 1,500 students.

“We are so blessed to have an abundance of clean drinking water just by turning on the tap and we need to help those who are less fortunate,” Reid said in a news release. “Imagine your children or grandchildren attending a school without having fresh drinking water,” he added. “Please help HAVE by donating whatever you can, to assist communities in West Bengal, who have been devastated by the cyclones. Being able to have fresh drinking water has an incredible impact on their daily lives.”

Local members of the HAVE board, including Reid, Paul Heffer, and Carolyn Langdon, have made visits to India over the years to document HAVE-funded drinking water systems.

HAVE was founded in 1982 in Minden and today has branches in Newfoundland and B.C.

Those interested in learning more can go to HelpAVillageEffort.org or email Reid at re9id@interhop.net. A tax receipt will be issued for any donation of $20 or more; people can also donate using Canada Helps – a link to which is on the website. Cheques can be made payable to Help A Village Effort and mailed to P.O. Box 553, Minden, ON, K0M 2K0. E-transfers are also accepted, see details under “How you can help” on their website.

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