Change Makers

7-year-old’s quest to end water crisis gains momentum

On the eve of the 2016 Kansas City Half Marathon, the Holy Spirit planted a dream in 7-year-old Addyson Moffitt’s heart: see every kid have clean water in her lifetime.

She’d learned about a little girl in Kenya named Maurine and that many kids like her don’t have clean water.

“I wanted to help them,” says Addyson, now 10. “I didn’t feel that it was fair that they had to go do that, and I just have to go to my refrigerator and get clean water.”

So she told her mother she wanted to run the half marathon next year and raise funds for clean water.

In the days that followed, Addyson peppered her mom and dad, Shayla and Bryan, with questions — when does training start, when can she start fundraising, how can she fundraise.

“That’s when we knew it was real,” Shayla says. “It wasn’t just a 7-year-old who had an inspiring evening.”

Shayla and Bryan prayed, asking God to lead them and Addyson as she began fundraising toward a $1,310 goal to represent the 13.1 miles she’d be running. When the half marathon arrived in October 2017, Addyson had raised more than $20,000.

She finished the race, and her mission only grew “because, you know, we can’t stop fundraising and running until the water crisis ends.”

Around then, her family sponsored two children who live in Maurine’s community. They began writing letters and sending school photos as well as praying for them and Maurine.

In spring 2018, the family ran the Global 6K for Water together for the second year in a row.

“It’s not a race. It’s not who comes in first. It’s not who has the best time,” Shayla says. “It is finding purpose and knowing that when you move one foot in front of another, you are impacting a life clear across the world.”

By the 2018 Kansas City Half Marathon in October, Addyson had raised more than $60,000. She ran again, and then in November, she appeared on The Steve Harvey Show to share her story. He surprised her with $5,000 toward her fundraising and a trip for Addyson and her family to visit Kenya in the spring to meet their sponsored child and visit Maurine.

 

Addyson hopes to raise another $60,000 this year, and she’s planning to run in the Global 6K for Water with her family on May 4, 2019.

“Don’t let anybody take down your big dreams,” Addyson says. “People might tell you that you’re too young, you’re too small, but don’t listen to them. Just always go for your dreams and don’t let anyone stop you.”

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