P&G and CARE to Provide Clean Drinking Water

Announced Thursday at a ceremony hosted by U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, the Procter & Gamble Company (NYSE:PG) and leading humanitarian organization, CARE plan to provide more than 100 million liters of clean drinking water in Kenya and Ethiopia through an investment of over $1 million dollars.

The organizations came together on World Water Day to announce the grant and to celebrate the milestone of the 100th school in Kenya provided with clean drinking water through their partnership, which focuses on enabling students to be agents of change.

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In addition, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton announced P&G’s commitment to the newly formed US Water Partnership, a public-private effort to unite and mobilize expertise and resources to address water challenges around the globe.

P&G will sit on the 2012 Steering Committee of the US Water Partnership and continue to focus efforts on sharing clean drinking water through partnerships like the CARE schools program.

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?)

“Introducing the P&G water purification packets to a community through school programs has a dramatic impact,” explained Greg Allgood, director of the P&G Children’s Safe Drinking Water Program.

“Children are empowered by the ability to transform their drinking water, and take that knowledge home to their families. By investing in children, we enable them to make a difference every day in their communities.”

The collaboration was initiated in Kenya in 2007 to explore ways to provide clean drinking water and teach simple hand washing behaviors to students. CARE trains two teachers in each school as patrons of the program in that school.

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Patrons are responsible for teaching improved hygiene behaviors, including hand washing, either directly or through school hygiene clubs. The program provides over 17,000 liters of clean drinking water each day to students and their families.

Today, the program celebrates bringing clean water and sanitation education to St. Linus Nzoia Primary School in western Kenya.

“P&G and CARE have brought us a way to have clean water,” said Stephen Opondo, Head Teacher at St. Linus Nzoia. “We are very pleased that now we will have healthy school children free of dysentery.”

An evaluation of the program identified a reduction in school absenteeism of more than 25%, and because students took the messages home, there was nearly a 3-fold increase in household water treatment.

In the picture above: Left to right (standing): Alex Mwaki, Principal Manager Safe Water Systems at CARE Kenya, Dr. Greg Allgood, Director P&G Children’s Safe Drinking Water Program, and Stephen Opondo, Head Teacher at St. Linus Nzoia Primary School.

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Rakesh Raman