Named for an often overlooked but integral position on any team, Waterboys unites NFL players from across the league in addressing the clean water crisis in East Africa. Founded by NFL player Chris Long, a serendipitous meeting in Tanzania with WorldServe president, John Bongiorno, and trustee, Doug Pitt, led to Chris’ newfound passion for this remarkable country. His desire to give back found a sweet spot with the connections and track record of WorldServe, one of the largest providers of clean water in East Africa.
Long set a goal of recruiting a “waterboy” from each NFL team – and he’s on a strong trajectory to fund 32 wells through the initiative (which is part of his foundation’s overall mission). Through this unique opportunity for NFL players and their fans to work together, those in need of clean water emerging as the victors, with more than 20 wells – each facilitated in Tanzania by WorldServe – already built.
WATERSUNDAY WITH THE WATERBOYS
Long’s commitment to bring clean water to East Africa through the Waterboys Initiative – along with WorldServe’s experience in working with faith community leaders, made possible the recent launch of WaterSunday with the Waterboys. A challenge to congregations and groups, the effort will provide a chance for congregations, communities, families and individuals to unite to raise funds and awareness for the clean water crisis.
The date for the inaugural effort is Sunday, January 28, 2018 – the Sunday before Super Bowl Sunday – though congregations and groups can choose an alternate date according to what works best for their community.
More than 100 Philadelphia-area faith leaders gathered with Long (a current member of the Philadelphia Eagles defensive line) to kick-off the effort. The invitation to participate is also open to congregations around the country with a goal of funding at least two water projects as part of WaterSunday with the Waterboys.
Want to Join? Register your group or congregation to learn more and receive exclusive resources to mobilize your members, including videos featuring the NFL Waterboys, fundraising ideas, and more.
Is Yours An Assemblies Of God Congregation? When AG congregation members participate, they can receive AGWM credit!
Use this form to register for the upcoming WaterSunday with the Waterboys.
Since October, 2014, St. Louis Rams Captain, Chris Long, has been recruiting team leaders from across the NFL to serve as their teams’ Waterboys. More than ten players (from ten different teams) have already expressed interest in taking on the role, with new commitments regularly being made.
Each locker room will set and work to raise a fundraising goal, providing their own funds and engaging their fanbases in the cause, to bring clean water to those who struggle to find water every day. This is a unique chance for NFL players and their fans to take gridiron competition to a new level – where the true victors are the tens of thousands of people – many of them children – who will receive clean water.
Long says: “As athletes, we know that water is essential to life. As athletes, we also have a tremendous opportunity to use our platforms to make an immediate, surefire difference. With football as its foundation, The Waterboys Initiative will grow yearly to help change the lives of millions of people in desperate need.”
In mid-June, the Waterboys.org site will unveil the enhanced social media and engagement tools behind this “competition for a cause.”