A friend of mine celebrated his 27th birthday this year in one of the most amazing ways I can imagine. Instead of asking for gifts, he asked all of his friends and family to donate $27 (his age) towards building a water well in Africa. As of today, he has raised $2390! Amazing!

How did he do it? Through a nonprofit called charity:water. Their goal is simple: to provide clean water to people around the world. It’s something most of us take for granted, since it’s something we enjoy without even thinking about. But for millions of people, clean water is a luxury they only can’t afford, but isn’t even within their reach. The goal of charity:water is to build water projects in communities, clinics and schools, as well as clean sanitation facilities.

The cool thing about charity:water is that it allows YOU to be personally responsible for bringing clean water to a village. How amazing of a feeling would that be?! Instead of going with the usual wedding registry, or asking people for birthday gifts, you can build a well in Africa! It may sound crazy, but Javier is living proof of the amount of money you can raise by just spreading the word. I encourage you all to look into the organization and consider following in Javier’s footsteps for your next big milestone in life!