Dr. Michele Wright wanted to find a way to encourage children to drink more water. As a result, she founded My Water Buddy®. Recently, I had the opportunity to ask Dr. Wright a few questions. Here’s how she responded.
1. What brought you to found My Water Buddy and Family®? What does your organization do?
I developed My Water Buddy and Family® as a result of my passion to help inspire children to drink more water and achieve better health. My Water Buddy and Family is a multi-faceted brand with a mission to bring awareness to the importance and health benefits of drinking the recommended daily intake of water for a healthier and more fulfilling life.
The Main character of the brand is My Water Buddy®, a unique personification of water (H20) and the human body. My Water Buddy embodies “The Family”, which consists of various anthropomorphic body parts and organ characters that drinking water positively impacts, including: Airy and Breezy, the Twin Lungs; Boney, the Bone; Brawny, the Muscle; Flowy, the Blood Drop; Flushy and Gushy, the Twin Kidneys; Pumpy, the Heart; Tummy, the Stomach; and Whizzy, the Brain.
Inside every boy and girl are an adventure and a battle to keep him or her strong, healthy, and alert so they can live the best life possible. My Water Buddy and Family unit sets out on a journey to use edutainment and their unique powers to educate and encourage children and their families to understand the benefits of water and to bring global awareness about the importance of water to the extended family of all living species, the Earth, and the environment, while adventuring into life topics important to children and parents such as bullying, self-esteem, obesity, peer pressure, autism, health, and education.
2. Can you talk about the health effects of not drinking enough water?
Did you know that Water – Yes, H2O – is Every Body’s Best Friend? Drinking water is very important to outer and inner good health. Water can make the difference between sickness and health as well as life and death. This reality is even more concerning as it relates to children, because they have higher water requirements in relation to their body weight than adults.
However, kids don’t always recognize the early stages of thirst, which can make them particularly vulnerable to becoming dehydrated, especially during times that can drive up their body fluid losses, for example, when they are playing sports or during warm weather. Dehydration, even if only mild, can cause tiredness, headaches, lack of concentration, reduced mental performance, and dry skin. Chronic dehydration can lead to fatigue, allergies, obesity, high-blood pressure, reduced longevity, heart and kidney problems, and other organ damage.
My Water Buddy and Family edutainment concept makes water cool, fun, and inspirational to children. The characters and stories are meaningful to a kid’s point of view and are full of excitement and adventure. Moreover, learning is being done without kids even realizing they are being taught. The brand cleverly motivates children to learn about their bodies, how the body is made up of water, the benefits of water on each part of the body, and all the nutritional outcomes of drinking water. Additionally, they will learn and understand the consequences of not drinking water, such as becoming dehydrated, being low on energy, and becoming fatigued. Kids and their parents will adore these characters, thus helping to make water their best friend.
3. What do parents need to know about preventing dehydration in their children?
They need to know that Water is an irreplaceable “Friend for Life”! Water makes up roughly two-thirds of the human body and is essential for all life to exist. Water is the best source to prevent dehydration and to keep the body and its organs strong and healthy, including:
1. Your Lungs (AIRY and BREEZY, the Twin Lungs)
2. Your Bones (BONEY, the Bone)
3. Your Muscles (BRAWNY, the Muscle)
4. Your Blood (FLOWY, the Blood Drop)
5. Your Kidneys (GUSHY and FLUSHY, the Twin Kidneys)
6. Your Heart (PUMPY, the Heart)
7. Your Stomach (TUMMY, the Stomach)
8. And Your Brain (WHIZZY, the Brain)
Water helps nearly every part of the human body function efficiently and has a vital role in keeping the body operating properly.
4. What other causes are important to you?
Having an extensive background in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM), I am very passionate about helping underrepresented students pursue careers in STEM. My commitment has allowed me to serve in various capacities on 501(c)(3) non-profit boards, including my role as President of the Milton Pitts Crenchaw Aviation Training Academy (MPCATA), an organization named in honor of Documented Original Tuskegee Airman, the Late Milton Pitts Crenchaw, with a mission to provide young people an opportunity to pursue Aviation and Aerospace careers. I am also the Technical Executive Officer for the Arkansas Mentoring and Networking Association, Inc. (AMNA), a non-profit organization dedicated to promoting opportunities for historically underrepresented STEM students in Arkansas, including opportunities to gain valuable exposure to STEM careers and professionals.
On a personal level, my mantra is, “If I can help somebody as I pass along, then my living will not be in vain.” That is what is important to me – making a positive and impactful difference in the lives of others whether it’s with a smile, a helping hand, an encouraging word of wisdom, a gift of love, or an act of kindness. But it is difficult to be your best when you are dehydrated or you lack access to water.
This is why I admire, appreciate, and celebrate pioneering champions like Lumbie Mlambo for providing life-changing charitable services to benefit underserved and impoverished communities worldwide. My Water Buddy, Inc. looks forward to collaborating and growing with Lumbie’s charitable organization, JB Dondolo, that she founded to make a difference in the fight against poverty, hunger, and thirst for not only today, but for generations to come!
5. What do you do to bring balance into your life?
It is important to take time out for one’s own well-being. I take time to spiritually meditate, connect, and positively reflect. I make sure to invest time to relax and muse on where I’ve been, what I’ve learned, where I’m going, and the exciting voyage ahead! There is always a bright spot in the cloud, and I make sure to enjoy the rainbow and embrace the journey as much as the destination.
6. Is there anything else you’d like for our readers to know?
Believe in yourself and stay positive! Become your BEST advocate and cheerleader. Be the BEST you that you can be and know that the BEST is still yet to come! Lastly, remember to drink your water, because, “Water is Every Body’s BEST Friend!”