This is a sponsored post but all thoughts are my own.
2.2 billion people lack access to safe and reliable water.
“Mom, that can’t be true!” my 12 year old exclaimed after he learned this fact at The Global Water Center’s® Mobile Discovery Center this past weekend. Living in the United States, with access to clean water anytime he wanted it, he just couldn’t believe that there were so many people living without safe drinking water.
The Mobile Discovery Center is a free traveling multi-sensory exhibit designed to generate awareness and inspire a movement of millions of people working to end the global water crisis. This first-of-its-kind, educational, and highly interactive exhibit featuring cutting-edge technology and immersive sensory activities is currently in Orland Park, Illinois (a suburb of Chicago) and is then headed to Nashville, TN.
Above is a video from the Global Water Center so you can get a sneak peek of the Mobile Discovery Center. Here’s a little more information about the exhibits themselves:
The first exhibit, Water Is Life, highlights the three states of water – liquid, gas, and solid – and explores the uniqueness of water on Earth through powerful visuals. You’ll learn why water is essential to life, and how access to safe water helps humans thrive and experience well-being.
The Water and People exhibit is where you go next and it reveals almost every aspect of life that is impacted by water. This explores the advantages and opportunities of reliable access to abundant safe water, and the challenges and obstacles people face throughout the world when facing water scarcity or unsafe water. Test your safe water knowledge in the Water Challenge game and other interactive experiences featured in this exhibit as well.
The third exhibit, Water for Everyone, uses augmented reality to give you an in-depth look at how the best technology and plans work together to deliver safe water to people who don’t have access. You’ll even get the chance to hear stories from around the world about community members who have gone from poverty to well-being because of access to safe water. This exhibit will ultimately lead you to understand how you can also help bring safe water to the 2.2 billion people in need.
Continue your journey at their outside water activity pavilions. Through hands-on learning, you’ll be able to better understand things like water testing, solar-powered systems, and water treatment. For both kids and adults, these activity pavilions truly make learning about the world of water fun!
After the outdoor exhibits, you can then view a movie in a dome shaped tent that brings all that you’ve learned together and reminds you that you can make a difference in the global water crisis.
Overall, I’d say that this center is ideal for those in Kindergarten and older. My two year old absolutely loved the water play outdoor area (as seen in the video above) where you could pump water (I mean, how can you not? There were ducks!) and could have played in that area for hours but the rest of the exhibits didn’t keep her interest for more than five minutes and made it difficult for me to really give the exhibits the time I would have liked to. I feel like this discovery center is engaging and interactive enough to keep grade schoolers attention and thought-provoking enough to keep the teenager and adults attention, too. This is really a great family-friendly experience! I think these exhibits would be the perfect educational opportunity for homeschooling families as well.
Days later, I’m still thinking about how in disbelief my son was when he learned how many people don’t have access to clean water. I believe this Mobile Discovery Center will really bring attention to this crisis and encourage those who attend to think about how they can help bring clean water to those who need it.
The Global Water Center’s Mobile Discovery Center is in the Chicago area this week. It is located in the Orland Square mall parking lot in Orland Park, IL. It will be open Wednesday, 10/20 through Sunday, 10/24. It is open daily from 10 AM – 6 PM CST (except Sunday, 10/24 it’s only open until 3 PM).
The center is free to attend and doesn’t require advanced reservations. We spent a little over an hour there but if you plan to stop by I would set aside a couple of hours to explore everything more thoroughly. Masks are encouraged.