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P&G Sets New Goal to Deliver 25 Billion Liters of Safe Drinking Water Worldwide

Amy Brown headshotWords by Amy Brown
Health & Education
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After achieving its 2020 goal of delivering 15 billion liters of clean drinking water one year early, consumer goods giant P&G announced in advance of World Water Day that it would deliver 25 billion liters of water—more than 100 billion glasses of water—by 2025 through its nonprofit Children’s Safe Drinking Water (CSDW) Program.

Since the program launched in 2004, P&G says it has worked closely with a network of more than 150 partners to raise awareness of the global water crisis and provide water to families in more than 90 countries through a simple purification process invented by a P&G laundry scientist. With just one packet, a bucket, a stick and a clean cloth, the company says 10 liters of dirty, potentially deadly, water can be turned into clean, drinkable water in only 30 minutes.

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), nearly 844 million people globally do not have access to clean drinking water. Every day, more than 800 children under age 5 die from diarrhea attributed to poor water and sanitation, according to humanitarian organization World Vision.

In a colossal waste of valuable time, UNICEF estimates that women and children spend 40 billion hours each year collecting and managing water that is often contaminated.

The United Nations has prioritized the need to address these challenges through U.N. Sustainable Development Goal 6, which aims to ensure clean water and proper sanitation for all by 2030.

Tapping into innovation

The P&G Purifier of Water packet was invented by P&G laundry scientists who were originally trying to separate dirt from used laundry water. They invented a breakthrough technology that can enable people anywhere in the world to purify dirty water in a simple, affordable and convenient way. The water purification technology was developed in collaboration with the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Global emergency relief organizations, such as AmeriCares, CARE, IFRC, PSI, Save the Children and World Vision, have provided clean drinking water using the P&G packets since 2004, according the company.

Celebrating water champions

P&G is partnering with National Geographic again this year to celebrate World Water Day and share the stories of five “Water Champions” who are working with P&G to help solve the water crisis. The Water Champions represent four of P&G’s largest partners and include:

  • Patricia Heaton, Emmy award-winning actress and World Vision ambassador
  • Carolyn Miles, president & CEO of Save the Children
  • JP Suarez, executive vice president and chief administration officer, Walmart International
  • Job Wasonga, project manager, CARE International Kenya
  • Allison Tummon Kamphuis, Children’s Safe Drinking Water program leader, P&G

Strength in numbers

P&G and these partners will collaborate in the following ways:

  • World Vision, building on the foundation of 2 billion liters of water already provided together, will use P&G packets as a bridge solution and in emergencies for more than 1 million people in more than 15 countries in Africa, Asia and the Middle East.
  • Save the Children, which marks its 100th anniversary in 2019, will deliver 100 million liters of clean water to families impacted by natural disasters and emergency situations in Ethiopia.
  • Walmart International will support the program to provide 100 million liters of clean water through the in-store 1 purchase = 1 liter campaign in 2019.
  • CARE will celebrate 15 years of partnership with P&G by expanding the CSDW program in Kenya to reach more than 100,000 people through schools and clinics, while also continuing support of emergency response and hygiene education efforts supporting 300,000 people in Ethiopia. 

Ripple effects of clean water

To date, P&G says its efforts to provide access to clean water are transforming communities by improving health, enabling education and increasing economic opportunities. In many of the stories profiled on the company’s website, children with access to the packets are able to spend more time in school, with fewer illnesses and, for girls, less time spent collecting water.

“We are proud to have reached this 15 billion liter milestone and inspired by the opportunity to make an even greater impact through our new goal,” David Taylor, chairman of the board, president and chief executive officer of P&G, said in a company press release. “This life-changing technology has helped many families over the past 15 years, and we’re eager to help even more in the years to come.”

Image credit: UNICEF Ethiopia/Flickr

Amy Brown headshotAmy Brown

Based in southwest Florida, Amy has written about sustainability and the Triple Bottom Line for over 20 years, specializing in sustainability reporting, policy papers and research reports for multinational clients in pharmaceuticals, consumer goods, ICT, tourism and other sectors. She also writes for Ethical Corporation and is a contributor to Creating a Culture of Integrity: Business Ethics for the 21st Century. Connect with Amy on LinkedIn.

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