January 22, 2013

Newman's Own Foundation Awards Four-Year Grant

Safe Water Network is pleased to announce the continuing support of Newman's Own Foundation with a $3.3m grant. The money will fund an expansion of water systems in communities surrounding Lake Volta in Ghana as well as support Safe Water Network's capacity-building requirements. 

Paul Newman co-founded Safe Water Network in 2006 with other civic and business leaders who recognized the considerable need to provide safe water to people without access. Because nearly 25% of the world's population lacks safe water, Paul Newman made it one of his three legacy priorities. Without this basic necessity, families are destined for a lifetime of extreme poverty. 

With Paul Newman's support and the generous contributions from the other founding members, Safe Water Network was established to develop locally owned and managed models that could be replicated and sustained over the long term so that communities could provide safe water for generations to come. 

This new four-year grant from Newman's Own Foundation builds upon the considerable progress the organization has made since NOF's initial grant in 2006. With field capabilities in Ghana and India, Safe Water Network is now overcoming the financial, operational and consumer obstacles to local sustainability and is providing safe water access to over a quarter of a million people. 

"This grant allows us to expand our slow-sand filtration pilot program," says Charles Nimako, head of African Initiatives for Safe Water Network. "Slow-sand is cost-effective and easy to operate in areas of abundant fresh water. There is tremendous potential here in Lake Volta for such an approach." 

The grant supports the slow sand program at twelve different sites over the next four years. Safe Water Network will closely monitor and refine these systems so that the approach can be easily replicated and sustained by communities throughout the region. 

"We are pleased to support Safe Water Network in their growth over the next four years," said Robert Forrester, president of Newman's Own Foundation. "Safe Water Network is committed to empowering people by developing affordable, lasting solutions that could ultimately help millions of people globally." 

"Newman's Own Foundation played an important role in getting us started," says Kurt Soderlund, CEO of Safe Water Network. "And this renewed support will help us take the work we've done in Ghana to the next level. The approach in Lake Volta has the potential to meet the needs of over 500,000 people in the region and many more around the world." 

Also included in Newman's Own Foundation's $3.3 million grant, is funding to expand Safe Water Network's development and communication capabilities. This additional funding will help us package our field findings and other materials in useful ways for other organizations, communities, entrepreneurs and interested individuals. The grant will also help us revamp our digital platform and enhance our social media activities. 

For more information on Safe Water Network, our Lake Volta programs and/or the Newman's Own Foundation grant, contact Stacy Johnson: sjohnson@safewaternetwork.org