Today is World Water Day. It’s a day when we can be thankful for the clean water coming out of our taps and turn the world’s attention to the 800 million people still living without access to clea... read more.
For our September campaign last year, 13,782 people helped us raise money for Rwanda. We set a goal to raise $1.7 million, and thanks to all of you, we raised more than $2 million.
Together, we funded seven systems, which will feed 106 tap stands and serve almost 26,000 people when complete. That will bring clean, safe water to everyone in Shyorongi and Ngoma sectors.
But we also made a promise — that once every last person in Shyorongi and Ngoma had clean water, we’d move on to the next sector. And the next. Until everyone in Rulindo District had access to life’s most basic need. And we’re following through on that.
Meet Bagina’s family:
This is one of many families who still trek for hours every day to collect water from rivers that are brimming with contaminants — pollutants from villages upstream and bacteria that can cause diarrhea, a leading killer of children.
The time it takes to collect this water and the toll it takes on health mean so much missed work, missed school and missed opportunity. For many Rwandans, it means an unbreakable cycle of poverty.
But we can help change that.
We’re raising another $2 million for Rwanda. We want to provide more piped systems. More tap stands. More people with clean water. And you can help too. Join us in fundraising.
In honor of Mother’s Day this Sunday, we wanted to share some of the wonderful, hard-working and inspiring moms we’ve met in the field.
One of the best parts of our job is getting to meet people that we’re helping. We get to see and experience the difference that clean water makes in people’s lives, and nothing beats that. For mothers, in particular.
These are usually women who were walking for hours to collect dirty water. Giving up their free time. Forgoing income opportunities. Putting themselves last. And working really, really hard.
Getting to be there when that moment changes for someone is special. We see a lot of very happy moms. Which is exactly what wanted to share with you.
Here are some of the happy mothers your donations have helped around the world.
Water Cooler Talks are a new thing we’re doing at charity: water — where we bring in smart, talented and inspiring people to share their story with our staff. It’s a chance to unplug for an hour, gain some new perspective and hopefully continue to get better at what we do.
Today, we were honored to have Theron Humphrey and his incredible dog, Maddie, in the house.
And although you surely recognize the extremely Internet-famous Maddie (who can stand on anything!), the really great story belongs to Theron.
Last year, Theron created a 365-day long documentary project called This Wild Idea — which took him all over the United States in search of stories. He literally spent each day meeting and connecting with a single new person, documenting their story with photos and audio and then sharing it with the world on his site.
The project was ultimately named National Geographic’s Travel project of the year.
It was an inspiring story for all us, and a great reminder that there’s so much value in the everyday moments of our lives — and the lives of people we meet around the world.
Thanks for the dose of inspiration, Theron.
Last Friday was such an unbelievable day. We’re still in awe. We saw so much support from sponsors, partners, volunteers, and donors… lots of great news stories and enthusiastic comments. It was just a really fun day– which we appreciate. And as a result, we have 7,408 new birthday pledges!
Just to put that into perspective: if every one of those people follow through and raise $770 (what the average birthday campaign raises), we’d raise $5.7 million for clean water projects. Amazing.
On behalf of everyone at charity: water, thank you for a very memorable World Water Day!
A few more highlights we wanted to share…
Our Waterwalk in Times Square:
Awesome Volunteers & Jerry Cans Around the World:
Roundup of cool news stories that came out of World Water Day:
• World Water Day highlights life-threatening shortages (USA Today)
• charity: water rules social media on World Water Day (PRNewser)
• 9 World Water Day Campaigns Making a Splash on the Web (Mashable)
• Raising Awareness on World Water Day (Instagram)
As you may or may not know, there is currently major unrest in Central African Republic (CAR). This story is dear to us, because it’s a place where we have been heavily involved since 2007 — investing nearly $3.5 million (most of which came from the 2010 September Campaign) and funding 414 water points to serve nearly 300,000 people. That’s almost 6% of the total population.
We have local partners at Integrated Community Development International (ICDI) who we’ve worked with for several years — so we’re following the situation very closely.
Here’s what we know about the current situation:
• There’s been a rebel uprising since December, with multiple rebel groups joining under an umbrella group called Seleka (meaning ‘alliance’ in Sango, a local language)
• A ceasefire was agreed in January. It fell apart, and fighting resumed, with Seleka taking over a few key towns
• Yesterday, Seleka took over the capital city of Bangui. President Bozizé left the country and is believed to be in Cameroon
• There was looting and gunfire in Bangui during the coup. 13 South African peacekeepers were also killed
• Michael Djotodia of Seleka has declared himself the new President, but the rebels appear to be divided over his rule
How this affects our work:
We currently have one grant in process with ICDI for 195 water projects. Due to the security situation, ICDI has stalled all operations in CAR. Most of their drilling, rehabilitation, and maintenance teams have returned either to their homes or to ICDI’s base in the less-affected city of Berbérati to the west. We do not yet know when it will be safe enough for the teams to resume work, but we will keep you posted.
CNN: What’s behind the turmoil in the Central African Republic
Centrafrique Presse: Seleka press release in French (use Google Chrome to translate)
Twitter: #Centrafrique, #CAR, #RCA