A child drinks clean water from a water well

Our Philosophy: The life-giving power of clean water

In everything we do, we seek to serve the whole person: physically, mentally, socially, and spiritually. Whether addressing the needs of a vulnerable child, the challenges facing a family in poverty, or the issues preventing a community from thriving, we deal with specific problems with the understanding that each issue interacts with and impacts others. In this series, we focus on one specific facet of the complex challenges facing those in need around the world.

“Water is life.” Most of us would agree with that statement without even thinking. That’s actually very telling: most of us haven’t had to worry about whether the water we use is clean or safe. The truth is, clean water is life. Unfortunately, for many in the developing world, finding a life-giving water source is really hard…with life-and-death consequences. For Cross International, there are few issues more critical to address in the communities we serve than clean water.

According to the World Health Organization, 785 million people in the world lack even a basic drinking-water service. Of those, 144 million depend on surface water from rivers, lakes, or streams. At least 2 billion people depend on a drinking water source contaminated with feces. In these circumstances, the very substance that is supposed to bring life often brings death. Contaminated drinking water causes an estimated 485 thousand diarrhoeal deaths each year. Diseases such as cholera, dysentery, typhoid, and polio lurk in contaminated water.

The impact of contaminated water is clear, but the issue is actually complex to address. A clean water source is essential, but to provide that water to a community, much more is needed. Communities must learn proper hygiene and sanitation practices so the water remains clean all the way from the source to a thirsty child’s lips. It must be carried, stored, and served in clean vessels. Maintaining a clean water source and equipment requires local leadership who are committed to plan for needed repairs…and the financial stability to pay for them. Providing clean water means understanding and addressing these interrelated issues.

Cross International is committed to working with our local ministry partners to do the hard work needed to solve these problems. When we commit to a water project, we rely on local information. We know our partners have evaluated the broader community needs and often have integrated programs in place. One hundred percent of our clean water programs incorporate WASH (Water, Sanitation, and Hygiene) training to make sure local people know how to handle clean water appropriately. We also develop local leadership’s commitment to the ongoing monitoring and upkeep of the project’s work.

Over years of successful clean water initiatives, we’ve constantly improved our methodology and our commitment to technical expertise with partners who truly know how to provide clean water…and all the necessary services that support it. Years of experience–and the benefit of monitoring the progress of water projects over time–have shown us which approaches truly bring life-giving health. Our goal is always to have a long-term positive impact, and we have learned that clean water is worth the investment. You get what you pay for, so we work only with experienced drilling companies who can guarantee their work.

The good news? Solving a community’s need for clean water has a huge impact! An obvious and tremendous benefit is the health of children and families who have access to clean water. The absence of the diseases and illness in contaminated water mean that these families are able to work, learn, play, and grow. Clean water access is particularly important for women and girls. Rather than having to walk for hours each day to draw and carry water, these wonderful women can manage small businesses and provide for their families. For young girls, not having to fetch water can mean as much as 25% more time in school, soaking in valuable education.

Clean water is life, and so many communities around the world still need its life-giving flow. With your help, Cross International is able to bring clean water to literally thousands of children and their families annually. We prioritize locations that have never had a clean water source. Will you join us in bringing life-giving water and the life-giving love of God to so many who still need our help? The positive impacts will continue for generations to come!


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Any gift you give before the end of the year will be MATCHED dollar for dollar, up to $75,000, to transform lives not only now, but into the future!

Help Children With Disabilities

The UN estimates that between 93 and 150 million children worldwide live with a disability. In developing countries, these children are often unable to attend school, play outside or access specialized resources. Negative stigma or superstition among their parents, neighbors and community leaders often reinforce these barriers.

This year, we’re providing $60,000 worth of medical equipment to Kupenda for the Children in Kenya. This is a very remote location, and your gift will help cover the shipping costs to this very worthy medical outreach.

This gift will benefit: Kenya

Heal the Sick

In developed countries, basic medical supplies such as gauze, wraps, bandages, and syringes are commonplace. Unfortunately, that is often not the case in the developing world. Christian doctors and volunteers in developing countries frequently run low on these supplies, and they also lack the funds to keep large inventories on hand.

This year, we’re providing $84 million worth of medicines and medical supplies. Your gift will help cover the shipping costs to medical outreaches in some of the most remote areas of the globe

This gift will benefit: Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Guatemala, Kenya

Build a Family a Home

A gift of a safe, secure home is tangible affirmation of God’s love for a desperate family — it brings hope, health, stability and opportunity. Most poor families must settle for much less. Mired in poverty, they are forced to live in unsafe shacks fashioned from mud and thatch.

You can provide the life-changing gift of a safe, storm-resistant new home with Cross partners Ambuya Development Center in Malawi and Hope of Life in Guatemala. A new home will ease the family’s burdens, protect them from the wind and rain, and help them achieve their dreams.

This gift will benefit: Guatemala, Malawi


The gift of an education is an investment that reaps long-term dividends for a child’s future. By opening doors for the children of the poor to enroll in Christian schools and get the same educational opportunities as their more economically well-off peers, you are giving not just a hand-out but a “hand-up.”

Your gift will fund Christian education to nurture vulnerable children mentally and spiritually — for thriving futures that will transform hopeless places.

This gift will benefit: Haiti, Ecuador, Uganda

Rescue Women and Children in Crisis

Through emergency child rescue services, vocational training, anti-trafficking programs and Bible literacy classes, Cross International is helping vulnerable women and children reclaim their lives. Inspired by Jesus’ love, we work shoulder to shoulder with our in-country partners, empowering them to create change that lasts so that those who need help will eventually be able to stand confidently on their own. Be a part of this good news and make a life-saving gift part of your holidays.

Your gift will help protect victims of gender-based violence and also help save marginalized women and children from harm.

This gift will benefit: Haiti, Guatemala, Nicaragua

Provide Clean, Safe Water

Our ministry partner, the Kachere Development Center, has an ambitious plan to install 20 wells, providing 5,160 adults and 8,414 children with clean water. Our goal is to finance the drilling and installation of one well – part of an entire community water system, which includes training to maintain the well, and sanitation and hygiene training for improved health.

One borehole can provide 2,800 gallons of safe, life-sustaining water every day. Help us bring clean, safe water to one of these villages today — in a way that will last for generations.

This gift will benefit: Zambia

Give Tools for Sustainable Farming

One of nine people worldwide survive on less than $1.90 a day. Without training and supplies to grow moneymaking crops and breed profitable livestock, poor farmers stay locked in the cycle of poverty.

By supporting this fund, you’ll help families break free of poverty — transforming lives for generations. When families get the training and tools they need, it means bountiful harvests and small animals that produce income for a sustainable business model.

This gift will benefit: Guatemala, Nicaragua

Feed Hungry Children

The United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization estimates that 811 million in the world suffer from under-nourishment. By providing the gift of food, you will save the lives of thousands of hungry children and their families in developing countries.

Your gift will provide meals for ministry partners such as Divine Shelter Schools in Haiti and Hope of Life in Guatemala. A generous donation during this season of giving will change lives forever.

This gift will benefit: Haiti, Guatemala, Nicaragua, Malawi

Most Urgent Needs

Inspired by the love of Jesus, we work shoulder to shoulder with local leaders overseas, equipping families with the resources they need to thrive – basics like food, clean water and healthcare, as well as longer-term community transformation projects that will ensure lasting change.

By giving to our Thriving Kids Initiative, you’re not only meeting children’s Most Urgent Needs, you’re also helping lift their families – even entire communities – out of poverty.

This gift will benefit: Africa, The Caribbean, Central America, South America

Feed Hungry Children

The United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization estimates that 811 million in the world suffer from under-nourishment. By providing the gift of food, you will save the lives of thousands of hungry children and their families in developing countries like Haiti, Malawi, Guatemala and Nicaragua.

Your gift will support the provision of meals and other basic services that are essential for survival. A generous donation during this season of giving will change lives forever.

This gift will benefit: Haiti, Guatemala, Nicaragua, Malawi

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