By David F. Rooney
Melanie Melnyk is bursting with pride over her 12-year-old grand-nephew, Alex Weber, who is cycling from Vancouver to Calgary to raise money to help finance a well-drilling program in Mauretania.
I am so encouraged that this young man, at his age, has such a passion for children in other parts of the world and that he’s willing to do whatever it takes to make a difference, Melanie told The Current as she waited for Alex and his co-rider, seasoned long-distance cyclist Jon Nutbrown of Calgary on Monday evening.
“He also is willing and understands the need to motivate and inform others so his vision just spreads from there. He’s a gutsy but humble kid!”
His dad, Grant Weber, thinks he’s a tenacious and remarkable young man Jon Nutbrown, the Calgary cyclist who has been with him on a tandem bike all the way from Vancouver says he is “developing mental toughness.”
That’s a marvellous quality to possess when you’re a boy who hopes to make a difference in this world.
“When I was nine I found out that people actually died from water-borne diseases,” he said over an early-morning breakfast at the Best Western Hotel. “I wasn’t okay with that.”
Making a tangible impact in this world takes a lot of courage and commitment and Alex has his work cut out for him.
He wants to raise $50,000 this year to drill water wells in Kenya. Last year, he raised $75,000 for wells that provided clean water to over 36,000 people in Mauritania, in northwestern Africa.
“Our job isn’t done,” he says. “There are about one billion people without access to clean water. Our goal this year is to raise enough money for two wells — $50,000.”
You can help Alex achieve his dream by donating a toonie or two to his cause.