Only a month in, and 2015 is already off to a busy start. Nineteen water purification systems have arrived in the Philippines and are ready for installation. We’ve got training dates lined up for water treatment, health education, and well repair. Seven water project trips are going to Costa Rica and Nicaragua. College students in Kenya are teaching health education in Nairobi slums after going through our distance learning program. Water purifiers have been shipped to such varied places as India, Honduras, and Nepal.
Next week, we’ll be announcing some exciting developments with a project in Uganda.
And there’s more good news! We successfully met the full amount of the Living Water Fund, a $100,000 matching grant by an anonymous donor, by more than $250,000. Thanks to our wonderful donors, we’re moving into 2015 with energy and excitement.
This year, we’re focusing on providing community-wide solutions towater problems. This isn’t really a new concept for WaterStep, but rather an extension of what we’ve been doing for years. We call it the Community Model.
The goal of the Community Model is to bring safe water to entire communities. Every community has a unique mix of problems that require a unique mix of solutions, and we work with people to find the right solutions for them. I explain a little bit more about how the Community Model works in a talk I gave at the IF Water Conference last September:
Water is a community-wide problem. If water is a problem, it is shared by everyone. A problem that effects every person in the community needs a holistic solution. The community model addresses water problems at multiple levels. Multiple solutions paired with training strengthen the community’s ability to take care of their own water supply and ensure long-lasting solutions.
I’m excited that our project this year focuses on the community model in Uganda. In a country where 1 in 3 people don’t have access to safe water, waterborne illness is a daily struggle for many. For one small community called Kaabowa Village, the struggle is a deadly one that many lose.
Next week, I’ll be sharing a little bit more about Kaabowa Village, and the Ugandan doctor that has dedicated his life to helping them. Stay tuned for his story, and how you can help Kabaawa Village get the water it needs to survive and thrive.