“At twenty-eight years old, Scott Harrison had it all. As a top nightclub promoter in New York City, his life was an endless cycle of drugs, booze, models - repeat. But ten years in, desperately unhappy and morally bankrupt, he asked himself, ‘What would the exact opposite of my life look like?'”
I’m Betty Martin with "Martin’s Must Reads" and that’s a quote from Thirst by Scott Harrison. The first chapters of the book recount his life growing up with loving parents, one of who developed extreme allergies. At eighteen he moved to New York City and became a nightclub promoter. At twenty-eight he had an epiphany, vowed to give up the wild life and tithe one year of his life as a volunteer at any charity that would take him. In 2004, he joined Mercy Ships and left to spend eighteen months on the Anastasis as a photographer documenting the before and after of thousands of Africans who underwent surgery to remove large growths on their faces.
The rest of the book follows him as he travels remote parts of Africa where he discovers the urgent need for 663 million people in the world to have clean water. He leaves Mercy Ships and with the help of two friends begins a charity called charity: water. He uses the party skills learned as a promoter to throw a great party and convince the attendees to think beyond themselves and address this urgent need. As of 2018, charity: water has funded 28,000 water projects that will help 8.5 million people get clean water.
If you want to read an uplifting story that will make you feel better about today’s seemingly self-absorbed world, you must read Thirst by Scott Harrison.