When we first conceived this project, we expected we would begin with five hospital sites in China at a cost of $5,000 per site. Three years later we have raised almost half that amount (thank you!!). In an effort to get the project off the ground, we have decided to launch with three hospital sites instead of five. This is why you will notice that we have reduced the funding goal for this project to $15,000 from the original goal of $25,000. It's because we just can't stand to wait any longer to expand our reach and serve more kids!
To date, our work in China has been focused almost exclusively on orphanages, in addition to receiving a rare invitation to provide clean water for displacement camps following the Sichuan earthquake in 2008. Our installation work in orphanages is nearing its end (we expect to be providing clean water to every orphanage in China by 2013), and most of our water systems at displacement camps have been decommissioned as people return to their homes. So it’s thrilling to be branching out into a new area: pediatric hospitals. We work in this arena already in other countries like Cambodia and Vietnam, and so we know the kind of impact clean, safe water can have on the children these hospitals serve.
As always, our model is not to build institutions—instead, we partner with existing ones that are serving children admirably, but doing so without clean water. Step one of that process is always to work with local allies who can help us identify potential partners and sites. Step two is to conduct an assessment of each site, determining need, capacity, and of course willingness to establish a long-lasting partnership.
So we are happy to announce that we have begun Step 1: Over the past few weeks, we have been working closely with the China Association of Social Workers (CNCASW) and the China Charity Federation to identify sites for possible water purification installations. We anticipate having sites selected by the end of June and begin vetting shortly thereafter, so that by the time we do reach the $15,000 mark, the project should be primed to take off! We will continue to raise money with the goal of serving more sites—we are on track to serve at least 1 million children globally by 2020—but having these three up and running will be a huge step toward that larger goal.
We are also pleased to announce that GlobalGiving has selected this project to receive a portion of the donations to their Bricks for Good Fund. Just click here and donate $50, and you will get a free gift: a super cool water-well LEGO set!
Thanks so much for your ongoing patience and support.
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