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Reaching the 7 Billion liter milestone - one liter for every person on the planet and Expanding CSDW in Latin America with ChildFund Brazil

April 15, 2014

Allison Tummon Kamphuis

Today we are celebrating the CSDW Program’s most global milestone yet - 7 billion liters of clean drinking water distributed with our safe drinking water partners in 75 countries. We're launching a new video to recognize this milestone and as you can see - the program is touching and improving the lives of children and their families all around the globe by providing clean drinking water (link).

How much water is 7 billion liters? It is hard to visualize that much water but it's equivalent to a liter of clean water for every person on the planet. To quote President Clinton from the new video, this is an astonishing thing - to think in less than 10 years we have provided more than 700 million packets of P&G Purifier of Water. In Africa, Asia and Latin America we have worked with our partners to reach those in need and we estimate that 7 billion liters of water has prevented nearly 300 million days of diarrheal illness and helped to save over 39,000 lives.

The 7 billionth liter is also a beginning for CSDW in our newest location - Brazil. For the past 4 years, we have been putting the plans and registrations in place to help provide clean water in the largest country in South America. Now it's exciting to see P&G Purificador de Agua (what the packets are called in Portuguese) helping families like Claudia Pereira Silva and her husband, Gilberto Pereira Barbosa and their four children - Wesley, Shirley, Sheila, and Sabrina - in the Jequitinhonha Valley region of southeastern Brazil.

Our CSDW partner in this new program is ChildFund with whom we've worked in many settings and countries to provide clean water. For over 75 years, ChildFund has focused on child development and protection and they've helped over 18 million children and families in 30 countries. Our partnership efforts mirror the CSDW Program's overall focus areas as we've provided clean water in emergencies - droughts in Kenya, floods in Mozambique, and after volcanic eruptions in Indonesia - and in rural communities without sustained access to clean water in Sierra Leone and Zambia. Our earliest efforts - several billion liters ago - helped people with HIV to live positively with the disease in Uganda. As a long-term partner of CSDW, ChildFund's CEO Anne Goddard has often said she believes in the ability of clean water to disrupt poverty and help children survive and thrive to reach their full potential.

Like many families in the semi-arid rural areas, Claudia and Gilberto don't have an adequate permanent water supply. The family lives on less than USD 3 per day. Like many in their community, their small house has four rooms (kitchen, 2 bedrooms and a living room) and no bathroom. The main source of water is the water collected from the river in buckets. The water is unprotected from animals using the river so the risk of contamination is very high.

Claudia knows that the water is dirty and might be the reason of many diseases her family gets, but she has no choice but to use it for all necessities: cleaning, bathing, cooking and drinking, as they don't have money to buy bottled water. To Claudia, the P&G packets are a magic water cleaner. After participating in the training demonstration she promised to use the P&G treated water for everything at her house. She believes that using the P&G water purification packets will improve her children's development. In her own words, "with everyone healthy in the family, we can achieve everything else."

Claudia's family is one of nearly 5,000 households the new program will reach in the state of Minas Gerais. Community volunteers will be trained to carry out education and awareness programs for 25,000 people so they know how to use the water purification packets and learn about the importance of sanitation and proper hand washing with the intent to reduce waterborne diseases in schools and communities.

As we look back to the first billion liter milestone achieved in Nigeria six years ago, global efforts to address the clean drinking water crisis are having an impact. At that time in 2008, UNICEF and the World Health Organization (WHO) estimated that 4,000 children were dying each day from diseases caused by contaminated drinking water. Today that number is down to 1,600 children but it is still 1,600 children too many for a problem that has proven, low-cost and scalable solutions to help address it like the P&G packets. While safe drinking water remains a problem for 1 billion people every day, together with our advocacy and implementing partnerswe will continue our efforts to provide clean water and prevent these needless deaths.

As we celebrate this global 7 Billion liter milestone, it is inspiring that we have the company's support and strong partnerships in place to do so much more. As we continue to scale up the CSDW Program toward our goal of saving one life every hour by 2020, we will help many more children and families have clean water in rural villages like Claudia's in Brazil, in nutrition and HIV treatment programs, and in times of natural disasters and emergencies.

You Can Help too!

To recognize this milestone, we are making it easy for everyone to help us provide even more clean drinking water through a new social media effort. Each time you post the hashtag #7billionliters on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram from now until Earth Day on April 22, we'll donate another liter of clean drinking water* (see more details on the #7billionliters program below)

*Social Media #7Billionliters Program details:

• P&G is seeking the public's support to provide even more clean drinking water through a social media initiative. P&G will donate an additional liter of clean drinking water every time social media users post the hashtag #7billionliterson Facebook, Twitter or Instagram from April 15 through Earth Day on April 22. Through this program, clean water supporters around the world can help P&G donate up to 1 million additional liters of clean drinking water to those that need it most.

• Para celebrar esta huella historica, P&G nos invita a que todos ayudennos a proporcionar mas agua limpia y segura a travds de una iniciativa en los medios sociales. P&G donara 1 litro adicional de agua potable cada vez que los usuarios compartan el hashtag #MasAguaLimpiaPGen Facebook y Twitter desde el 15 hasta el 22 de abril, fecha en que se celebra el Dia Mundial de la Tierra. Por medio de este programa, P&G va a donar hasta 1 millon de litros de agua limpia y segura adicionales a las personas que mas lo necesitan alrededor del mundo. La distribucion de la donacion de estos litros adicionales se realizara de forma global de acuerdo con el programa mundial de P&G Agua Limpia para los Ninos.

• Para celebrar este marco historico, a P&G convida todos a unir forcas para nos ajudar a levar mais agua limpa e segura aos que mais precisam por meio de uma iniciativa nas midias sociais. A P&G doara 1 litro de agua potavel adicional cada vez que os usuarios compartilharem a hashtag #MaisAguaLimpaPGno Facebook e Twitter de 15 a 22 de Abril, data em que se celebra o Dia Mundial da Terra. Por meio deste programa, a P&G doara ate 1 milhao de litros adicionais de agua potavel e segura para as pessoas necessitadas ao redor do mundo. A distribuicao dos litros adicionais desta iniciativa sera realizada de forma global de acordo com o Programa Mundial da P&G, Agua Pura para Criancas.

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