Jane Swanson ’78 Posted on September 9th, 2016 by

Jane Swanson of Carbondale, Illinois, will spend approximately three weeks partnering with African communities to provide fresh water sources to more than 2500 villages in remote areas of Malawi, Zambia & Tanzania. Swanson will leave for Africa on September 16th, her second mission trip with Marion Medical Mission. Forty U.S. volunteers will work in remote villages to help them provide sustainable, life-saving fresh-water wells to areas who previously had none. “I’m excited about returning to Malawi, but it may also be a difficult trip this year because the country is in the second year of a famine due to drought,” said Swanson. “The villagers are so overjoyed to receive the wells because they know how much impact they’ll have on their health and overall quality of life, particularly for children.” In addition to installing wells, Marion Medical Mission uses its infrastructure to purchase and distribute maize to help address the famine, which threatens 6 million people in Malawi. UNICEF reports that in sub-Sahara Africa, one in five children die before their fifth birthday because they lack potable water. 663 million people around the globe rely on ponds, streams and other exposed and untreated sources for their drinking water. For just a $400 donation, Marion Medical Mission provides an African village of approximately 150 people with a sustainable source of safe drinking water; $20 buys enough maize to feed a family for a month. For more information, visit www.mmmwater.org. Swanson retired in 2015 from her position as a professor of psychology and interim dean of the College of Liberal Arts at Southern Illinois University.

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