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.
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.
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.”
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.
To ensure the success of this program several evaluation methods will be put into place:
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 email@example.com.
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 programs. We 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 need. Together, 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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
APLS focuses on improving health and sanitation facilities in the underserved health clinics in four very rural villages of Xepiun, Vipecbalam, Quechip and Tujolom in Ixil region of western Guatemala highlands. Previously, these clinics lacked basic sanitation infrastructure, forcing residents to rely on their rudimentary home resources. In developed nations, it is hard to imagine not being able to wash your hands before entering into a doctor's office. APLS built, for each clinic, the much needed hand-washing stations, septic systems, bathrooms and sidewalks --immensely helpful in the wet season, and often overlooked.
The impact of APLS projects has been huge. UNICEF estimates that diarrhea diseases are responsible for claiming the lives of 1.1 million children globally every year. According to Inter-American Development Bank, the water and sanitation sector in Guatemala is characterized by low coverage, poor quality services, and deteriorating physical assets related to a need for increased investments in basic infrastructures. Population growth, agricultural expansion, unevenly distributed services, and polluted sources have contributed to the inability of citizens to access adequate amounts of clean water and basic sanitation.
Agua Para La Salud is working to remedy these limitations, working directly with the rural communities in dire need to save lives and build healthier and brighter futures for thousands of families and children in the hardest to reach areas of Guatemala. Approximately 2,562 people now have access to the hand-washing stations and clean water thanks to APLS. APLS' health clinics are self-sustaining and community-led; taking the strain off the national hospitals in the nearby municipality of Nebaj.
Palmyra is quick to SMS update on its project profile page of construction stages, factors that may delay prospective work, impact evaluations, and more. Most recently Palmyra has submitted notes for the Sanitation Facility of Endiyur Village of Marakkanam Block of Villupuram District, Tamil Nadu, India. These maintenance indicators couldn't be more important.
Palmyra's project has done much more than build 25 new toilet facilities for Endiyur. Palmyra has held training programs to foster learning of key community personnel, namely women groups to become self-help groups for Endiyur for years to come. These self-help groups proved to Palmyra that intimate knowledge of the local environment can significantly contribute to sustainable water project designs. For example, local beneficiaries were able to identify Palmyra's original design for Endiyur as flawed. The first design did not include both showers and toilets. It was determined, however, that combining the two could help rid the community of water stagnation near homes which is a breeding place for mosquitos which often cause malaria and dengue fever in the area.
Women quickly became integral to the planning, design, construction, operation, allocation and management of funds for Endiyur's sanitation projects. The empowerment attained through these new leadership and managerial skills is directly responsible for women contributing more to the economy; further lifting the village out of poverty. This sanitation project is a true example of how safe drinking water and sanitation is at the center of health, happiness and opportunity.
Blue Planet Network is proud to feature Palmyra and its work across rural communities in southern India.
Since March 2012, Blue Planet Network has grown from 84 members working in 1,130 communities across 21 countries to 102 members working in 2,400 communities across 27 countries. In addition, Blue Planet Network has supported its members who have worked tirelessly to bring clean water to over 1,100,000 people in 2013, a significant increase from 825,000 people since early 2012.
One project we are celebrating is the successful pilot implementation of H2O Health Plus (H20+), a multi-use initiative that seeks to ameliorate the dire health and socio-economic situation confronting impoverished villagers in Uganda, especially women and girls. H20+ is demonstrating the unique power of sustainable safe drinking water, hygiene and sanitation to provide measurable improvements in health (particularly childbirth safety, maternal health and early childhood health), health clinic capacity, economic vitality and education. Blue Planet Network leaders will train H20+ participants to use our peer-to-peer collaboration and online technology services. Namely H2O+ will use SMS reporting technology to send progress reports and ongoing project data to Blue Planet Network’s technology platform, which will serve as H20+’s planning, monitoring and evaluation system.
Thanks to our generous funders, H20+ was piloted in 2012 successfully in Pallisa, a district in Eastern Uganda. The project brought clean water to rural populations and improved capacity to underserved health clinics as well as communities. International Lifeline Fund, a member on Blue Planet Network's platform, drilled H20+'s borehole wells and have partnered with Africa Ahead to launch Community Health Clubs. Five borehole wells were constructed near health clinics providing 6,392 villagers living in these five communities with direct access to clean water. Additionally, those traveling from afar to these clinics have access to this clean water, which calculates 4,000 visitors per year per health clinic. Because of the strategic placement of the wells, the program will benefit 25,600 people annually. For more on H20+’s pilot results and the creators behind the model, see this washfunders.org article.
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