Monday, October 31, 2016

Water, Come Closer!

Picture Book: The Water Princess
Author: Susan Verde
Illustrator: Peter H. Reynolds
Summary: This story is based on the childhood experiences of Georgie Badiel, fashion model born in Burkina Faso.
A young African girl, Gie Gie, who is called Princess by her parents, longs for the ability to summon water. 
Despite her dancing, contorting, and pleas for the water to come closer, no water comes. 
Instead, every morning she reluctantly gets out of bed 
and walks with her mother a very long way to get water. 
Half way there, they stop for some nuts under a gorgeous tree. Upon arrival, she plays with her friends, while her mother stands in line. When they fill their containers, they can’t drink the water because it is dirty.
Finally, heavy pots are placed on their heads for the long and careful trek back. Once home, the water is boiled. Then Gie Gie gulps a refreshing and energizing drink of water. 
When her beloved father returns from the fields, their evening meal has been cooked thanks to the water they gathered. 
Later, clothes and body are washed so that Gie Gie can delight in her cleanliness. 
Dreading the next early morning rise to walk for water, Gie Gie asks her mother why getting water is so hard. 
Her mother replies, “Someday you will find a way, my Princess. Someday.”
Hanna’s Comments: Perhaps through her success and in collaboration with a charity called Ryan’s Well, Georgie Badiel has fulfilled her mother’s prophesy. Badiel is finding a way to bring water to the drought-ridden villages of her home country. 
More details and photos are found in the back along with links to Ryan’s Well and the Georgie Badiel Foundation who are working together to encourage better access to clean water in Burkina Faso and beyond. 
This book reminds me of another PBT offering that you might like as well. Find my post about Come On Rain! by Karen Hesse [here].
Original Publisher & Date: G.P. Putnam’s Sons, 2016
Age & Grade Appropriateness: 5 and up, K and up
Formats other than Book: Tablet
Scripture Connections: They shall not hunger or thirst…, for one who has pity on them will lead them by springs of water (Isaiah 49:10); Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied (Matthew 5:6); Whoever gives one of these little ones even a cup of water will not lose a reward (Matthew 10:42); Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer (Romans 12:12)
Idea(s) for Application: Read this book to a group of children, youth, or adults who are learning about issues of access to clean water, activists who improve access to water, “thirsting for righteousness” through activism, or Biblical concepts of prophesy and vocation.