Access to clean water is essential to health, happiness and basic survival. Without it, millions of children needlessly fall victim to waterborne diseases. Mortality rates skyrocket; poverty and hunger become widespread; and school attendance rates drop. In many communities, water collection is done by women and often, girls. These women and school-age girls spend hours each day walking to far away water sources, and carrying water containers that can weigh as much as 40 or 50 lbs on their back as they trek miles to their home.

It costs only $25 to provide 1 person with access

to safe drinking water for life.

Access to this vital resource improves health, sanitation, poverty and overall quality of life. Improving access to clean water has been at the forefront of ONEXONE’s efforts since 2006. In support of H2O Africa, the non-profit organization founded by ONEXONE Ambassador Matt Damon, ONEXONE helped launch 60 water well projects in a single year across Rwanda, Central African Republic, Uganda, and Niger.

ONEXONE renewed its commitment to this important cause in 2008, in collaboration with the Clinton Global Initiative, by launching a $1 million project with Water.org. This project will provide 55,000 people in Africa with clean water, improving the health and lives of children, families and communities.

Most recently, ONEXONE and Water.org partnered on an Ethiopia REST initiative serving the communities of Gulo-mekeda and Ganta-Afeshum. The goal of this project is the provision of potable water and sanitations facilities, reduction in the morbidity rate caused by preventable waterborne diseases, and the improvement of attendance rates among school-age girls.

Before the project began, the main source of potable water for the people of these districts were low-yielding springs (which are also used by animals, thus creating unsafe and unsanitary conditions) and distant hand pumps (which are largely insufficient and ineffective).

The Ethiopia REST project implemented 2 borehole wells, 7 hand-dug wells, 4 spring developments, 1 roof rainwater harvesting system, and 150 pit latrines which provide clean and potable water a reasonable distance from home to the more than 4 thousand people in these communities. In addition, training has been provided to 84 members of the community who will assume responsibility for taking care of the water resources in the future. Education regarding proper health and sanitation practices has been provided to 200 local people who will teach the community these practices.

Construction of these new clean water resources

have reduced the average walking distance/time

for daily water collection to just 10 minutes (on average).

Other positive and meaningful changes include: fewer incidences of waterborne diseases and overall improved health as well as a reduction in the prevalence of diseases (including diarrhea), especially in children.

We are proud of the incredible, tangible, and everlasting progress we’ve made but there are still many more communities who need help. Together we can solve the world water crisis – but we need your help!


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