Miss Mississippi 2017 Anne Elizabeth Buys spoke at the Rotary Club of Jackson about her experiences and about the importance of clean water.
Monday, February 5, 2018
Brooks Buchanan, Rotary president and assistant general council, C Spire, called the meeting to order and welcomed everyone.  The invocation was given, the pledge of allegiance and four-way test were recited and guests and visiting Rotarians were welcomed. Buchanan announced the Program Committee would meet after today’s meeting. 

Rise Against Hunger (formerly Stop Hunger Now) will be held March 3 from 9:00 to Noon at the Ag Museum, where we always meet, to pack at least 30,000 meals.  We will be joined by the North Jackson  Rotary Club. Bring family, friends, school groups, scouts and others.  For more information contact Keith Ferguson at keith@LogoStoreUSA.com or 601-924-5355.

Julian Watson introduced Anne Elizabeth Buys, Miss Mississippi 2017, who was accompanied by her father who is a Rotarian in Vicksburg. She talked about the Miss Mississippi and Miss America pageants and the great friends she made at those events.  Her goal this year, and in life, is to make a difference and leave the world a better place.  As Miss Mississippi she visits schools regularly and attends the Batson Children’s Hospital birthday party each month, where she is uplifted by all the smiling children who are living their lives fully despite their sometimes threatening health problems. 

Her personal platform is clean water.  She became involved at the age of 13 when her family helped build a water well in India which allowed villagers to have clean water for the first time.  Ten percent of the world’s population does not have clean water. Every 20 seconds, a child dies from a water-born disease. She related the story of a young girl who had to quit school so she could gather water for her family.  When they got a water well in her village, she went back to school.  Buys has helped send water to Flynt, Michigan and to Texas after the hurricane.  Since age 13 she has helped build five wells.  The cost has been $18,000 per well, but this figure may increase this year.  After her year of service as Miss Mississippi, she will continue her education as a senior at Mississippi State majoring in communication and hopes to be a sports broadcaster.