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Target Water Bulletin - September 2012

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Target Water Bulletin          September 2012

Welcome back to a new (academic & club) year! I hope you had a good summer. My summer was good...but different. While the people we help with wells in Cambodia have too little water, I had too much water this past summer! Due to torrential rainfall the first weeks of June, the water level of northern Minnesota lakes was WAY too high, resulting in flooding, home damage, septic contamination of lakes and shoreline damage. The road Target - water on Road to our cabin was flooded, as well as a big portion of our front lawn. Even though the water had receded considerably by the time I arrived the end of June, it was still very much a problem. While the lake our cabin is on was less disastrously affected than other lakes in the area, there was a strict "no wake" policy for boats on the lake the first half of our vacation. For a family of water-ski enthusiasts - we ski twice a day many days! - this resulted in a very different kind of vacation.

Fortunately, we have a lot of friends in the area and since there are plenty of other fun things to do, we still had a great vacation in spite of the water problems. The same cannot be said for the resort on a nearby lake as almost all of their summer guests cancelled. The restaurants and stores in the area were also hard hit by the lack of summer vacationers. A lot of economic problems...and all caused by water. While I try not to take water for granted, I am reminded to have a healthy respect for the havoc caused by not having the proper amount.

I am excited for the last 4 months of the Target Program and really hope more clubs will join in the Target Program to raise our club participation percentage. I hope you will plan a water event - awareness & /or fund-raising at your club - as well as getting the word out in your club newsletter. If there is any way in which I can help, I'm only a mail away! If you read on in this bulletin, you will find a short piece on water awareness, some quick and easy fundraising ideas and an update on wells from Cambodia.

Have a great Fall, and jump into the Target Program!

Cheers! 

Anne van Oorschot

Target Water Program Chair

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Water Awareness - Newsletter Cut & Paste

Since Water Awareness is an important aspect of the Target Program, why not put the list below in your club newsletter? It is quick and easy and will encourage your club members to think about water challenges. Simply add a couple of lines as a personal introduction and you'll be done!

Ten startling facts about water:

  1. 884 million people lack access to clean water - that's almost 3 times the population of the United Sates!
  2. An American taking a five-minute shower uses more water than the average person in a developing country slum uses for an entire day.
  3. People living in informal settlements (i.e. slums) often pay 5-10 times more per liter of water than wealthy people living in the same city.
  4. The earth is a closed system, meaning that it rarely loses or gains extra matter. The same water that existed on the earth millions of years ago is still present today.
  5. Somewhere between 70 and 75 percent of the earth's surface is covered with water, but much more fresh water is stored under the ground in aquifers than on the earth's surface.
  6. About half the world's hospital beds are occupied by someone with a water related illness.
  7. It takes over 11,000 liters of water to produce a pound of coffee.
  8. Of all the water on the earth, humans can use only about three tenths of 1% of this water. Such usable water is found in groundwater aquifers, rivers, and freshwater lakes.
  9. Nearly seven times more water is used to make a disposable water bottle than it contains.
  10. Bottles used to package water take over 1,000 years to bio-degrade and if incinerated, they produce toxic fumes. It is estimated that over 80% of all single-use water bottles used in the U.S. simply become "litter."

Fund-raising - Ideas!

With 4 months left to go in our fund-raising campaign for the Target Project, some clubs have done numerous events, while others have not participated to date. I encourage all of you do plan one event for the coming months and have 6 simple ideas to share with you:

There are many more resources and presentations to be found on the FAWCO Website (under Philanthropy - Target Program) so make use of them. No sense inventing the wheel twice! I would love to hear what you have done and would love to include a Success Story from your clubs in a future Target Bulletin.    Good luck!!

Target - raffle Water Photography Winner

Update - Wells for Clean Water, Cambodia

With 4 months left to fund-raise, our donation to date is $106,160! They were busy over the summer in Cambodia, installing 125 new field wells and 23 new family wells. This brings FAWCO's total number of wells up to 276 field wells and 267 family wells in Cambodia!! While we have exceeded our original fundraising goal, there are still a lot of people in Cambodia who do not have water, so I hope you will help us continue our surge for clean water!

I received the following information from Tabitha's founder, Janne Ritskes, the beginning of September and pass it on to all of you. It's good to realize the huge effect our wells are making!

IDEA!!: At your next meeting, read Janne's update, or publish it in your next newsletter. Your members will be very impressed with the impact their donation, or future donation, has made or can make.

Dear Friends and partners,

Today I would like to share the impact of water on our families. With a change of attitude through savings, a source of dependable water has the greatest impact on our families. This past 12 months we were able to install 2,597 sources of water which directly impacted 5,350 families. What we mean by direct is that the water sources are installed for specific families because these families must be able to earn an income from the water. However, families in the community who do not have their own water source do have free access to the water for family use - uses like taking baths, washing clothes, water for cooking and cleaning.

The impact on our families is immense! Their spendable income changes dramatically from less than 50 cents a day to an average of $6000 USD per year ($16.00 per day). How is this done? For families who have land suitable for growing rice: the change is from growing rice just once a year to growing rice year round. When I visited our Takeo project a few weeks ago, I was stunned by the intelligence of our families. The families had an average of 2 hectares of land but the land was broken into various plots of differing sizes. What the families were doing was growing rice at different stages. When I arrived, a number of plots were being harvested, while in other plots the rice was half grown and in others they were target - rice field just beginning to plant rice. The effect was amazing as our families were constantly harvesting and earning monthly incomes from their rice.

One lady, Theira, was so excited! Her eyes were full of joy as she showed me her plots being harvested that day, plots that were half grown and plots they were re-planting. But it is the men who make it so very clear the impact this has on their lives. A consistent comment from the men, who stand proud and defiant before me is, "I bought my children back." I cannot begin to imagine under what circumstances so many of the men chose to sell their children, but I do know the circumstances that are bringing the children home. 10,356 of our families began growing rice year round this past program Target- watering veggiesyear.

For our families who have land that is not suitable for growing rice, growing vegetables of all kinds brings about change. Last week in our Kandal project I visited 60 hectares of newly grown vegetables. What a joy it was to see! Better yet, how delicious the vegetables are to eat. The variety of vegetables is amazing: corn, tomatoes, lettuces of all kinds, and surprising to me are things like Spanish onions, large green peppers and ginger. I never knew that Cambodia could grow such a wide variety of foods. 9,120 families were able to begin raising vegetables this past year.

 

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