The Story of an Organization’s Mission to End Water Scarcity in Central African Republic

In the heart of the Central African Republic (CAR), a place where basic necessities often elude the grasp of its people, one man’s enduring commitment has led to the creation of a transformative organization – “Water for Good.”

Founded by Jim Hocking, whose profound love for the country and its people has driven him for decades, this nonprofit initiative is reshaping lives and communities in the CAR.

The beginning

Jim Hocking’s journey began as a child in the CAR, where his missionary parents instilled in him a deep affection for the land and its inhabitants.

He returned to the region with his wife, Faye, in 1977, dedicating himself to training youth leaders and launching a literacy campaign that brought education to hundreds of CAR schools. Over the next 20 years, the Hockings poured their hearts into the CAR, raising their children there and solidifying their connection to this nation.

However, Jim’s dedication transcended the bounds of education and spirituality; he recognized that the CAR faced immense challenges.

The populace struggled to meet basic needs, a devastating AIDS epidemic gripped the region, and the relentless forces of poverty and conflict bred despair. Jim knew he couldn’t stand idly by; he wanted to make a lasting impact that could endure even in the face of political upheaval.

Birth of the organization

In a remarkable twist of fate, a friend offered to sell his well-drilling business to Jim, on one condition – that it be operated as a non-profit venture. Jim hesitated at first, feeling ill-prepared for such a venture.

But the urgent need for clean water in the CAR weighed heavily on his heart. For many of the country’s 4.7 million inhabitants, obtaining water meant arduous hour-long treks to collect unsanitary water from streams and rivers.

Jim’s perspective shifted as he witnessed the dire healthcare challenges faced by these communities, particularly the alarming rate of child mortality.

He realized that answering this call to provide clean water was a divine mission. Thus, “Water for Good” was born.

Challenges on the path

Jim understood that the journey to bring fresh water to remote villages was riddled with challenges. Drilling a well was just the initial step; he recognized that the sustainability of clean water sources was the linchpin to success.

Many well-intentioned initiatives had faltered by neglecting the ongoing maintenance of pumps, leaving villages vulnerable to a return to water scarcity.

From its inception, “Water for Good” stood out as a beacon of hope. It wasn’t just about drilling wells; it was about empowering local communities.

Jim’s visionary approach involved an all-local staff committed to regular well maintenance. They formed bonds with the communities, empowering them to initiate projects that would thrive in the long run. When people take control of their water source and apply that same empowerment to their lives, it creates a transformative ripple effect within the community.

Providing clean water to millions

The impact of “Water for Good” speaks volumes. Over 680 new wells have been drilled by dedicated Central Africans, with 1,000 water pumps now under their care.

This means that more than half a million people now have access to safe drinking water every day. Health has improved, incomes have risen, and communities are being revitalized, all contributing to a brighter future for the CAR.

Jim Hocking’s journey from missionary kid to founder of “Water for Good” is a testament to the power of one individual’s unwavering commitment to making a positive change.

His legacy is not just the wells and pumps but the empowerment of communities, the preservation of hope, and the promise of a better tomorrow for the Central African Republic.

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