Worldwide 2.1 billion people worldwide don’t have access to safe water; and 4.5 billion people lack access to adequate sanitation. Women and children spend more than four hours walking for water each day, and more than 640,000 people die each year from water-related diseases. These numbers are overwhelming to me. I thought it was bad - just not that bad.

Educated and trained as an environmental engineer, I have done research on where I could have an impact in a country where water and adequate sanitation are not taken for granted.   When I was in my twenties, I thought about going to another country and helping them to design and build a water system or wastewater treatment system.  Life got busy with work, marriage, stepchildren, my son and family and friends, as it tends to do!

What gets my attention and inspires me about Water For People (WFP) is the amount of progress they are making in taking on the daunting task of helping billions of people with these basic needs. WFP works with local governments and communities to listen to their needs and partner with them to provide lasting access to safe water and sanitation for future generations.  I believe in the long-term success and sustainability of WFP programs because WFP co-invests (never fully funds a project),

Build capacity in new system to make sure they are sustainable on their own,
Monitor and report on new systems to ensure they are successfully operating, and
Invest energy into replicating systems within a district with government and community involvement.
In addition to all that, WFP’s strategic partnerships extend every dollar we donate - $50 becomes $524, $500 becomes $5,240, and $1,000 $10,480. That is exciting news to me!  

Occasionally, I still think about a time when my son has grown older, and I can make a trip to a project site where I can see the immediate impact of using my skills on real people that are watching our work.  But until then I know that in this season I get to be a supporter rather than a doer of this amazing work being done by WFP.  Please join me in making an impact in the world by support Water For People in their efforts to provide safe water and reliable access to sanitation to people around the world.