Gail Hairston


Thirst Tour Introduces UK to Global Water Crisis

Published: Dec 5, 2012

LEXINGTON, Ky. (Dec. 5, 2012) — How did eight college students – with no money, no manpower, no resources – change the world one day? It doesn’t really matter “how.” It just matters that it happened, and it’s continuing to happen in schools and colleges all across the nation. That opportunity to save and improve the lives of desperate people visits the University of Kentucky on Dec. 10.


Stripped of all luxuries, when deprivation pares our needs to the life-sustaining basics, humans must have only a few things – clean air, nourishing food and untainted water. Clean water is what the eight college friends could not deny a village in Uganda in 2007. Read how they turned $70 worth of bottled water into The Thirst Project, a multi-million dollar global humanitarian enterprise, which has raised $2.6 million to provide more than 100,000 people with safe, clean drinking water. The Thirst Project goal is provide the same blessing to one million people by 2015.


The University of Kentucky Bookstore is the latest stop added to the Thirst Project’s School Tour, a nationwide initiative aimed at educating and engaging students. The Thirst Project is a nonprofit organization working to raise awareness about the global water crisis, a problem that affects more than one billion people.


The Thirst Project helps build water wells around the world to generate and promote access to clean drinking water. Costing as little as $5,000 to build, a freshwater well in most developing nations can change an entire community’s lives forever.


All members of the campus community are welcome to visit the UK Bookstore at 4-5 p.m. Monday, Dec. 10, to learn more about this issue and the exciting ways students are getting involved to make a big impact.


“We are proud to support the Thirst Project’s mission to educate students about the water crisis — a problem currently affecting more than one billion people around the world,” said Sally Wiatrowksi, store director at the UK Bookstore. “As University of Kentucky’s campus bookstore, we are focused on maximizing education, and this is a great opportunity for students to learn more about a global issue and how they can be part of the solution.”


Follett Higher Education Group, operator of UK Bookstore and more than 930 campus stores across North America, serves as one of the leading sponsors for the Thirst Project. The company’s support of Thirst is based on a shared commitment to ensuring young people have access to essential knowledge and resources. Follett drives student success by ensuring they have affordable access to the textbooks they need. Likewise, Thirst works to help people gain access to clean drinking water.


“Follett’s partnership enables The Thirst Project to reach and engage thousands of college students who are passionate about ending the global water crisis,” said Seth Maxwell, founder of The Thirst Project. “Their support has been vital in our efforts to drive awareness of the need for accessible, clean drinking water in communities around the world.”


Follett provides more than five million students with access to affordable textbook choices. In the past three years, Follett has saved students a record $1 billion through its popular Rent-A-Text, Used, Buyback and Digital programs. For additional information on how to save money on textbooks at the University of Kentucky, visit or


To learn more about the Thirst Project and its global efforts to improve access to clean drinking water, please visit




Media Contact: Gail Hairston,, 859-257-3302.

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