Today Procter & Gamble (P&G) announced a milestone in their effort to save one life every hour through sharing clean drinking water.
Nearly a decade ago P&G began providing clean drinking water in developing countries through its P&G Purifier of Water technology, and has just shared its 5 billionth liter – saving an estimated 26,000 lives and preventing over 200 million days of illness.
The 5 billionth liter was delivered in Malawi, through a partnership with the University of North Carolina (UNC).[ Also Read: Water Wells to Serve Children in India ]
Recently, Unilever, through the Unilever Foundation, in partnership with PSI (Population Services International) announced the launch of Waterworks, a not-for-profit programme that will provide safe clean drinking water to communities in need around the world. (Read: Unilever Launches Water Initiative on Facebook)
And a ceremony hosted by U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Procter & Gamble and leading humanitarian organization, CARE planned to provide more than 100 million liters of clean drinking water in Kenya and Ethiopia through an investment of over $1 million dollars. (Read: P&G and CARE to Provide Clean Drinking Water)
Earlier, P&G announced that more than 350 bloggers participating in its social purpose Internet campaign, the GIVE HEALTH Clean Water Blogivation, have reached the company’s goal of providing 100,000 days of clean drinking water to people in developing countries. (Read: Can Bloggers Provide Clean Drinking Water?)[ Also Read: Blogosphere: Where Bloggers Promote Your Brands ]
“We have teamed up with the P&G Children’s Safe Drinking Water Program in a cross-campus collaboration that is saving thousands of lives in Malawi by providing clean drinking water,” said Myron Cohen, MD, Director of the Institute for Global Health & Infectious Diseases at UNC.
“This far-reaching collaboration is providing service and research opportunities for our students and making a powerful impact on the lives they touch through their work.”
The collaboration has reached tens of thousands of women and children – women like Lusiya Daniel. Each day, Lusiya collects water from a highly contaminated local well for herself and her nine children.
Through the program, she receives P&G Packets at each clinic visit, and was the recipient of the 5 billionth liter of clean water shared by P&G.
“I’m so happy that I’ve been lucky to receive the 5 billionth clean liter,” Lusiya said, “and had there been a radio I would have danced to express the happiness that I have.” This was informed by P&G.[ Also Read: Medicines for Diseases that Strike Women ]
This moment was captured by a team of UNC student videographers, journalists and photographers who traveled to Malawi with the organization Students of the World in an effort to “shine a light on the world’s problem solvers.”
Their footage tells Lusiya’s story – the story of the 500 millionth packet used to transform dirty, dangerous water into something clean and drinkable.
“Stories like Lusiya’s reaffirm the importance of forming innovative partnerships to solve complex problems,” said Greg Allgood, director of the P&G Children’s Safe Drinking Water Program.
“P&G’s technology combined with the expertise of UNC’s Institute for Global Health & Infectious Diseases created a powerful solution that continues to help save lives and prevent the spread of diseases.”
The milestone marks progress toward P&G’s commitment to scale up efforts to share clean water and save one life every hour by 2020 by providing 2 billion liters of clean water every year.
This commitment was made at the Clinton Global Initiative, which P&G will return to next week in order to share its results to date and new initiatives.
Photo courtesy: Procter & Gamble