As the sun rises on this Saturday after Thanksgiving, we’ve all cleared away the remnants of our holiday feasts, braved the Black Friday crowds (or resolutely have NOT done so), and now the weekend lies before us.

On the calendar for this Thanksgiving break, it’s Small Business Saturday, a day to shift your shopping list to your local merchants. Several studies have shown that when you buy from an independent, locally owned business, a significant percentage of your money goes to purchases from other local businesses, service providers, and farms — further strengthening the economic base of the whole community.

Thinking small like that sounds familiar to us here at Water to Thrive, where one of the core concepts of our mission is local sustainability. When we fund a water project, we consider the small community where the well will be located and what will serve them best. We ask that community to congregate a water committee and implement community-wide WASH training (water, sanitation, and hygiene). The local community takes ownership and control, and your gift creates not just a flow of clean, safe water, but decades of empowerment and health.

We’re just a couple of days away from Giving Tuesday, when we will be asking you all to support our Dig Deep initiative by supporting our fundraiser. We are approaching the funding of our 1,000th well, but we need to fund more than 50 wells in the next five months to reach our goal before our anniversary year is ended.

The first $5000 raised will fund an entire water project that will serve a rural African community for 20 years, bringing the blessing of clean, safe water to people who have not had it before. Then we will raise an additional 10 percent for our Drop by Drop Fund, which covers the costs that allow us to sustain our mission. Once we’ve zipped through the first $5500, we’ll do it again!

(And, while you can give at our website anytime, starting at 8 a.m. on Giving Tuesday, if you give through our Facebook fundraiser, Facebook will match your gift!)

So today, support your local small business in your hometown. And on Tuesday, support a local water project in rural east Africa. On both of those days, you can make a difference!