Safe Drinking Water & Sanitation for Those in Need

 
$6,567
$3,433
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David Christof is a Czech marathoner and global water warrior. He has completed 21 marathons and 13 ultramarathons, including two 100 mile runs. This year, he is traveling around the United States in a philanthropic educational journey, to run an additional 21 marathons, speak at 21 different schools, and raise at least $21,000 for two sustainable water projects at two schools in Buwama, Uganda. The money David raises will go directly to the construction of the wells, being implemented by Blue Planet Network member organization: Drink Local. Drink Tap., Inc.

Run Around the USA campaign goals

  • Educate students about the world water crisis and speak at universities and schools around the USA & Canada
  • Inspire children to come alive and pursue their dreams with passion and intensity
  • Motivate children to be physically active and enhance physical and mental well-being
  • Fundraise $21,000 to build wells at 2 schools in Uganda

David began running in 2007 as part of Blue Planet Network’s 20-person Blue Planet Run team that ran around the world in a non-stop relay, leading them through 16 countries in 95 days to raise awareness and funds to eliminate the global water crisis. In 2012, he ran a self-supported marathon from Prague to London, spanning 821 miles. The next year, not only did he run and bike from Prague to Morocco (2,002 miles!) to fundraise for safe drinking water, but along the way, he presented at 34 high schools about the global water crisis. In 2014, David ran across Jordan, almost 300 miles (over 11 marathons) in 11 days, to fundraise for Syrian and Jordanian children’s education.  During these 3 philanthropic journeys, he fundraised over $41,000 for charity.

"I love endurance-adventure, helping others, and the cause of safe drinking water is very dear to me. The fact that about 6,000 people die every single day because of lack of access to safe drinking water is very alarming. We need to realize how fortunate we all are by not having to think about such a basic need as safe drinking water. One fifth of the world does not have this luxury, and it is our duty to help." - David Christof

David continues to run to raise awareness and educate students about what they can do to help. He runs for the 780 million people who don’t have access to safe drinking water. He runs for people sick with waterborne illnesses, who are taking up half of the world’s hospital beds. He runs for the 6,000 people who die each day from unsafe water. He runs for the women in Africa and Asia who walk, on average, of 4 miles to collect water.

Through personal example and engaging speaking, David has inspired students to care about global issues, be active, and pursue their dreams. Most importantly, he demonstrates that one person really can make a difference. His last marathon will take place in the Czech Republic in June. In July of 2015, David plans to travel to Uganda to personally hand over the funds raised and help start the water projects. 

Learn about Drink Local. Drink Tap.'s project in Uganda

With David’s fundraising help, Drink Local. Drink Tap will bring 2 wells to the schools of Wabilgalo and Wantabya in Uganda. Listen to an interview with Wabigalo Primary School head teacher, Molly, and watch this video to understand a day in the life of a child of Wantabya Kkizongo Primary School. These children spend 3-4 hours each day fetching water that is 1.3 miles away, only to bring back unclean water that brings serious illness and keeps them out of school. These problems will be eliminated with the installation of wells made possible by Drink Local. Drink Tap. 

Check out his Blue Planet Network link here to learn more, or contact him directly at waterislifedavid@gmail.com.

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!

Links:

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.

Meera Hira-Smith of Project Well
Meera Hira-Smith of Project Well

What's the common thread among these interviews? 

Sabore Ole Oyie, Dr. Meera Hira-Smith, John Nguyen, Dave Meader, Rudi Dundas, Jin Zidell and Lisa Nash recognize that it's unconscionable to allow 768 million people without safe drinking water to fend for themselves. As a result, each of these individuals have chosen to become part of the solution. Our members profiled above work in different regions and specialize in sustainable techniques of project implementation, but they all come to Blue Planet Network with the shared values and commitment to being a part of something bigger.

Blue Planet Network helps connect over 100 water implementers, funders, and grassroots communities through our innovative online platform and award-winning programsWe allow our members to track and manage their projects online and help them to continually monitor and analyze project milestones for long-term success. We work hard to meet the demands of our members so they can design longer-lasting, evidence-based programs and serve even more people in needTogether, with your support, we will continue to provide the online tools and programs that drive sustainable water and sanitation projects and bring disadvantaged people out of survival mode and into the world of opportunity.

Please read about all of our members and their project data being tracked and shared on Blue Planet Network.

Thank you so much for choosing to support Blue Planet Network and our member water projects here on GlobalGiving.

 

Sabore Ole Oyie of Sabore
Sabore Ole Oyie of Sabore's Well
John Nguyen of East Meets West
John Nguyen of East Meets West
Rudi Dundas of Drop by Drop
Rudi Dundas of Drop by Drop
Dave Meader of SV2
Dave Meader of SV2

Links:

Pure Water for the World. Photo by Jim Baker
Pure Water for the World. Photo by Jim Baker

What brings us all together today is the power of water. Water changes everything. Time and time again it is proven that access to clean water and sanitation makes the greatest difference in the lives of people that need it the most. Blue Planet Network is working tirelessly to help communities rebound from serious disease and socio-economic setbacks related to contaminated water and ineffective hygiene habits. We thank you so much for joining our team.

Still, 780 million people around the world are without access to clean water. Women and children suffer disproportionally. Collectively, they spend 200 million hours each day hiking long distances, only to lug back water that is contaminated more often than not. The question becomes, "How do we bring water to more people, more efficiently?"

Blue Planet Network has researched the global water crisis, listened to the needs of communities and has acted by building a collective action network. Together we can make the greatest impact. Blue Planet Network works by bringing the global water, sanitation and hygiene sector together as a transparent, close knit community focused on the longevity of water projects. Our global technology platform empowers our 109 members, funders and implementers alike, with the tools to plan, track and monitor projects. Blue Planet Network now hosts 1,900 water and sanitation programs that benefit over 1,500,000 people. Specifically, we would like to share the sustainable results of our SMS Text Monitoring tools and collaborative Peer Review service.

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Spotlight on

 Pure Water for the World

Since 2009, Pure Water for the World (PWW) has partnered with Blue Planet Network to increase the impact of their thirteen water projects, six in Haiti and seven in Honduras. PWW uses Blue Planet Network’s tools and services to gain best practices within the water sector shared by other members of the network. They also showcase their projects to global partners and interested funders using a comprehensive and attractive dashboard, one of the features of Blue Planet Network’s platform.

In 2012, PWW submitted two water project plans for Peer Review to Blue Planet Network. Through a collaborative online process, including many questions from a panel of 4–6 members, and thorough responses by PWW, both project plans were approved. By participating in Peer Review, Blue Planet Network members help each other plan high-quality programs designed for sustainability. One such program is PWW's water project in Port-au-Prince, Haiti that helped 1,000 children gain access to clean drinking water by installing water filters in 16 schools. These children are now attending school regularly and living healthier lives, free of water-related diseases.

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Spotlight on:

Palmyra

Palmyra is appreciated by local and state governments for its pioneering efforts in water conservation and rural development across India. Palmyra tracks and monitors ten of its water and sanitation projects on Blue Planet Network, totaling nearly $2,938,000. 

In 2012, Palmyra launched a women-led water, sanitation and hygiene project to provide 250 rural villagers with clean drinking water and latrines in the Karasanur Village of southern India. Palmyra submitted the project for Peer Review and received high ratings by five Blue Planet Network members with key experiences. Like PWW, this quality control process and sharing of best practices provides funders with a high level of investment confidence. 

Palmyra also utilized Blue Planet Network’s SMS Text Monitoring service for its Karasanur Village project to report impact. Palmyra’s personnel texted 35 SMS status reports available on Blue Planet Network’s platform. Project stakeholders were able to easily follow the project’s milestones and celebrate its successes.

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We are excited to continue offering even more innovative online services to scale the impact of water programs, and look to our supporters to help make that happen. We thank you for being part of our vision to increase the opportunities that sustainable clean water brings and to saying yes when people need us the most.


Pure Water for the World. Photo: Jeremy Jeziorski
Pure Water for the World. Photo: Jeremy Jeziorski
Palmyra. Photo by Dean Forbes
Palmyra. Photo by Dean Forbes

Links:

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Project Leader

Blue Planet Network

Redwood City, California United States

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