Water Filter Testimony
My name is Jayne Dowdy and my story began with the contagious passion for mission that my friend, Nancy Sterling, exhibited which would lead to my first year serving in Honduras in 2010. It was an awesome trip filled with hard work, Christian fellowship, and new Honduran friends. But why was God sending me?
When I eagerly returned to Honduras the following year, the whole team became sick on the bottled water we drank. We were experiencing first-hand what they deal with on a daily basis. The illness we all suffered led me to research and purchase a personal Sawyer water filter to take with me on my 3rd year, just in case. Little did I know at the time that God was bringing to life Romans 8:28- And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.
The 4th year I asked my friend and church family member, Jeff Iosa, who was working for Sawyer water filters at the time, if they made a larger filter that would filter water for the whole mission team. He gave me 5 Sawyer water filter kits on packing day and said “I gave you a few extra to take to the village”. The water filter kits were quickly thrown in the suitcase and not looked at again until we unpacked in Honduras. Once I was able to take a good look at them I realized we needed 5 gallon buckets and there are no Home Depot’s in the area so I put them aside and thought I would bring them back the next year when we could plan better. Then I witnessed Santos, a student at the school, drinking dirty water. That moment my heart was filled with so much compassion for this little boy. Everybody deserves clean water! I knew I had to find some 5 gallon buckets to assemble the water filters and our amazing group leader Martha scrambled to get us six 5 gallon buckets which would make three water filter systems. We left one at the school and one at each of the two churches in the village of El Mico. The two unassembled kits were given to Honduras Outreach, Inc. Ranch Director, Jose, for research. Jose said “This could be the solution to the water problems in all the villages we serve”.
We are called missionaries, but truly we are visionaries. We are only in Honduras for a short time to see through the eyes of Jesus and report the physical and spiritual needs of the village back to the church and with God’s help meet them. We reported back to St. Andrew’s and the church responded big time! Thanks to the generous support from this church, family, and friends the next year we brought 110 filters which officially began the water filter project. We received a report from Honduras Outreach, Inc. ranch staff that the filters were making a big impact with cases of diarrhea dropping from 52.9% down to 6.77% in El Mico.
There was such a dramatic decrease in water borne illness that in 2015 we delivered 115 water filters to El Predrero, a very remote village, that is having severe problems with water borne illnesses. With a great need recognized by HOI and the St. Andrews Honduras Mission Team, HOI made clean water a priority project in 2016 and has a goal to deliver 2000 water filters in 2 years through St. Andrews and other U.S. mission teams. We were able to bring 500 water filters to the Agalta Valley, Honduras in July 2016. We are amazed at how God has multiplied the gift of 5 filters.
2017 plan- Our New Port Richey Campus mission team plans to travel to southern Honduras known as the dry zone where some communities don't have access to water at all in October 2017. Our Dunedin campus mission team would like to deliver more filters to the Agalta Valley, Honduras in July 2017. Our goal is to drill a well for $12,000 to $15,000 (875 ft deep) in southern Honduras and provide 500 families with a Sawyer water filter between both locations.
This is a modern day “Feeding of the 5000” story. It started with compassion and the gift of 5 water filters and God is multiplying it through this church, local Presbyterian churches, Sawyer water filters, friends, family, and even strangers! I am literally in awe with what God is doing in Honduras through this church.
I wasn't sure why God was sending me to Honduras when I ventured out on that first mission trip and it's a common statement you hear from other missionaries. The thing is we don't have to know... we just need to show up when He calls us. He already has it all worked out!
St. Andrew's Presbyterian Church
Attn: Jayne Dowdy/ water filter
705 Michigan Blvd.
Dunedin, FL 34698
*Please put "Water Project" in the memo.
Or you can give online here: www.gofundme.com/watergiveslife