Group walks from Carmel Valley to San Juan Bautista to bring water to Haiti

Central Coast charity walks for water awareness

CARMEL VALLEY, Calif. - The elements aren't stopping one group here on the Central Coast from making a two day journey from Carmel Valley to San Juan Bautista on foot.

The two day trek kicked off Thursday and they say it's all for an important cause.

Thursday was World Water Day and highlighting the importance of freshwater is exactly what the group hopes to do.

They're also making the more than 40 mile walk to raise a thousand dollars for a water well drilling machine in Haiti.

The water used to fill the five gallon jugs the group is carrying, wasn't hard to come by.

But that's here on the Central Coast, in other parts of the world, getting enough water can be nearly impossible.

"In second and third world countries where they don't have access to clean drinking water, many times they're carrying these five gallon jerry cans 3.7 miles to and from the water source," said Todd Sondgroth, founder of The Change a Heart Foundation.

That daily struggle is exactly what the foundation hopes to end.

"We are going to set out on a trek of about forty miles with these water jugs that are forty pounds," Sondgroth said.

Through social media and that walk from Carmel Valley to San Juan Bautista, they hope to raise awareness and money that will eventually bring a well to people in Haiti.

"A big piece of our purpose is to utilize our gift, our resource our privilege to help others in the world who need our help," said Sondgroth.

The group knows it won't be easy, many people who were expected to join backed out.

"Last week we had about 25 people that were signed up for this and because we started seeing some rain on the actual schedule on top of really letting the distance sink in and what that's going to mean physically we definitely had people drop out," Sondgroth said.

But those who did show up say whatever difficulties they may face will be worth it.

"I only act out of love fear isn't allowed in my circumference," said Tyler Stark, "I'm here out love and that love is for the people who don't have clean water."

"I feel it's the right thing to do, I feel that we have to be the voice for those that don't have a voice, I feel that that every man, woman and child should have clean drinking water."

Sondgroth says they hope to raise funds and have the machine in Haiti no later than November.

To find out more about the Change a Heart Foundation, click here.

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