Blue Planet Network

Blue Planet Network is a global network of experienced water groups, funders and grassroots communities working to bring sustainable safe drinking water to people in rural communities around the world. Beyond health, accessing clean drinking water is the critical first step for communities to rise out of poverty, to gain education, and to ensure economic and political stability. To date, our network of members has enabled more than 1,500,000 people with clean drinking water and improved sanitation. However, we CANNOT stop there. Our goal is to enable safe drinking water for 200,000,000 people in the next 20 years and we need your help.
Dec 2, 2014

Empowering Women on #GivingTuesday - Give Water, Give Life!

Blue Planet Network works to improve the impact of our member water and sanitation projects worldwide. When we give water, we give life.

Blue Planet Network is a powerful online platform that gives water, sanitation and hygiene experts from all over the world the tools and means to monitor projects, share their data and network via peer reviews. The collaboration and learning that ensues allow organizations to make effective changes to program designs for the best long-term results. As a fully transparent, not for profit organization, Blue Planet Network makes these discussions and data visible to all who visit blueplanetnetwork.org. 

Member Spotlight: Global Women's Water Initiative

Today, we’d like to share the life-saving work of our member Global Women’s Water Initiative (GWWI). GWWI uses a “train the trainer” approach in Uganda to provide clean water and sanitation, the essential elements for a healthy, dignified life.

The Issues

  • The Water Access Problem: In the Gomba district of Uganda there is only 42% safe water coverage and half of the unprotected, open tanks are over 3 miles away. Resultantly, women and children are forced walk very long distances to collect water for their families. The effort that they put into collecting water systematically keeps them from completing their education and the long, isolated journey often puts them in danger of being assaulted. 
  • The Sanitation Problem: In Gomba, many people simply do not believe in using latrines. As a result, the district reports 1,500 diarrhea cases and 50 under age-five diarrhea related deaths per month.
  • The Woman Problem: Just 5% of the women in Gomba have control over basic resources, such as land, and many are unaware of their right to work or own property. This makes them especially vulnerable to cycles of poverty and dependence.

The Solution: Empowering Women Empowers Communities

GWWI's approach focuses on ‘Women and Water Trainingsthat train participants to become leaders in their communities. In addition to constructing rain water harvesting tanks, biosand filters and latrines, graduates of these trainings go on to lead projects implemented by the women of the village and that utilize local resources, such as clay and soil for brickmaking. Female users are in mind every step of the way. For example, uniquely, these latrines will include a menstruation cleaning bay and 1,000 girls will receive menstrual health education. 

Going Above and Beyond: Strengthening the local economy for long-term impact

  • 3000 people will receive training that emphasizes hygiene best practices, water treatment techniques and the importance of water resource protection. The women that participate will leave with practical skills and importantly, with the understanding that the long-term success depends on the transfer of their knowledge to the rest of their communities. 
  • 1000 girls will benefit from menstrual health education, allowing them to better understand their own physiologies and contribute to their emotional intelligence.
  • 5 micro-entrepreneurial womens' groups will create products such as soap and reusable menstrual pads. These small businesses will contribute to economic growth and will better position the community to withstand the periods of drought and food insecurity that are common.

Your contribution today on Global Giving supports the collaborative Blue Planet Network member projects such as the one you have learned about today. We hope you consider Blue Planet Network and our members today!

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Aug 1, 2014

Clean Drinking Water for California Students

As drought tightens its grip on California, national attention is being focused on water issues for the state. Amidst this shortage of water, we must always keep in mind that a sustainable source of safe water is the bedrock of opportunity for a society.

The Need:

Over 25 schools in 2013 throughout California, as documented by the California Department of Public Health, have arsenic contamination in their water, while another 16 schools have high levels of nitrate, a harmful by-product of farming.

  • Because of these contaminates, a child may suffer from skin rashes, diarrheal illnesses, pesticide poisoning, circulatory problems, or cancer. 
  • These cases lead to long-term absenteeism from school, increased health-related costs and financial stress on the family. 
  • Additionally, research demonstrates that when students have access to clean water to drink in school, their health and wellbeing is significantly improved, such as the decrease in obesity or dehydration.
    • As documented in a report by California Food Policy Advocates on Improving Water Consumption in Schools, “...the consumption of fluids during meals is a necessary strategy to maintain proper hydration for children.” Dehydration is associated with impaired cognitive function and can adversely affect memory, reasoning, hand-eye coordination, concentration and alertness. 

In total, approximately 75-80 schools in California have harmful contaminates in their water. Cash-strapped schools are struggling to provide students with clean water. State Assemblyman Luis Alejo (30th California Assembly District) recently acknowledged, “Access to clean drinking water in our rural school districts is clearly a problem in California.” 

The Solution:

To mitigate the water challenge facing California, especially in low-income communities who suffer disproportionally, Blue Planet Network is coming forward. "Clean Drinking Water for California Students" is a program designed by Blue Planet Network that brings together a consortium of technical advisors, community advocacy organizations and expert water system implementers based on their track record and commitment to collaborate. 

Program Goals:

  • To combine cost-efficient water filtration systems with a community engagement program to reach 3,000 people at a minimum of 5 underserved schools. 
  • Provide school-based water system training to a minimum of 25 school administrators (5 per school) to ensure proper maintenance, financing and long- term sustainability.

To ensure the success of this program several evaluation methods will be put into place:

  • Survey before and after program implementation the incidence of contaminated drinking water in schools. 
  • Survey a sample of the school administration and student population before and after the program to measure the health and obesity levels of students. 
  • Track the attendance of students, administrators and community members in water-related presentations and awareness campaigns in school and in the local community. 
  • Interview a sample of community members, students and administration before and after the program to understand the “real life” impact of safe drinking water in the schools and on the communities.
  • Conduct a final impact study to document the overall health of students and their increased activity and academic performance level. 

Our program will help children stay healthy now, while long-term initiatives tackle the greater agricultural and political causes of California’s water crisis.  The program will be entered onto Blue Planet Network's technology platform to be tracked, shared and monitored through the lifecycle of the project. 

With a reliable source of clean water, schools can provide their students with a healthy future and families can focus on bettering their lives. Thank you so much for joining this important cause here on Global Giving! 

To find our more about this program you may email info@blueplanetnetwork.org.

Jul 10, 2014

You're invited to follow progress in Honduras with Blue Planet Network!

We have a few updates for you! 
 
Firstly, thank you again for supporting Blue Planet Network member, Pure Water for the World and their crucial water systems for schools across Trojes, Honduras. The implementation of the project began in May 2014 and was completed in late September 2014. The project will continually be monitored on Blue Planet Network here for the best chance to ensure long-term functioning. While our fundraising term for this project on our GlobalGiving page has come to a close, we welcome you to follow Pure Water for the World online here and to visit their projects tracked on Blue Planet Network here. Pure Water for the World will continue their due diligence and update their projects via Blue Planet Network’s award-winning monitoring and knowledge sharing programs as described here.
 
We welcome you to support other Blue Planet Network member projects on our general GlobalGiving page here. We hold funding rounds for our peer approved member projects of which your funds will support.
 
Once again, your donation made through GlobalGiving is supporting the construction of bio-sand filters for drinking water and latrines, deworming medicine, and hygiene education for schools across the Trojes region.
 
Schools will become a safe haven. Children will attend school more regularly and the attendance of young girls will increase. Overall, children and families will spend less time sick or in the hospital and away from their school and community. Children will learn hygiene skills that they can practice long-term and continually share with their families. Put simply - children will move from merely surviving to thriving in their community.
 
As we say at Blue Planet Network - Water is Life. Pass it on.
filters
filters

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