Today we are excited to share that our blog now has a new home within the P&G Children’s Safe Drinking Water website. This will make the content easier to find and will bring all of our CSDW news into the same space.
Next week, the International AIDS Conference (AIDS 2012) will be held in Washington DC. This is a huge meeting with more than 20,000 participants and it’s the first time in 25 years that it will be held in the U.S. P&G will participate in three different events at the AIDS 2012 meeting including co-leading a panel on water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH) for people living with HIV/AIDS. I’m thrilled to have the honor to introduce Debra Messing at the panel. Debra recently traveled as a PSI ambassador to Zambia where she did a demonstration of the P&G water purification packets for people living with HIV/AIDS.
I recently had the pleasure of traveling for a week in rural Malawi with the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill (UNC) Chapter of Students of the World (SOW). In this blog, I’ll share some of my thoughts about that trip and background on our collaboration. We’ve worked with SOW for the last five years and this was my first opportunity to travel with them in the field.
I’m in South Sudan for the first time since their recent independence. There’s been a tremendous amount of development since I first visited this new country four years ago. During my first visit to the capital of Juba, there was only one short paved road that lead from the airport and now there are miles of paved roads. While there’s a lot of development, there’s also a lot of concern about the future both because of the potential for armed conflict with the north and because of the stop in the flow of oil which has decimated government revenues. For example, building on the new airport terminal has come to a halt and there’s a fear of many services being discontinued because of the oil embargo.
I’m in Rwanda where we launched the P&G Children’s Safe Drinking Water (CSDW) Program two years ago. My last visit was right after the launch to provide our purification packets so I’m eager to see first-hand the progress.
Today, I’m taking a small 3-seater bush plane to Mbirikani in south east Kenya to visit Africa Infectious Disease Village Clinics. I take the co-pilot’s seat after being admonished to not try and fly our plane. We have a 50 minute flight from Nairobi to within 60 kilometers of Mt Kilimanjaro.
I’m back in western Kenya in Nyanza Province. This is where we started our not-for-profit effort to provide the P&G water purification packets through women to women selling and it’s been going strong since 2003. I’m visiting today to see our latest effort to help Moms.
I’m in Western Sumatra, Indonesia to kick-off the Pantene Healthy Hair for Healthy Water campaign that is leveraging the P&G Children’s Safe Drinking Water to provide clean water to vulnerable communities in Asia. We’re visiting a program conducted by World Vision to demonstrate to the local media the on-the-ground impact of the CSDW Program.
Today, in celebration of World Water Day, we’re participating in a ceremony convened by US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton where we’ll announce a new collaboration between P&G and CARE to provide more than 100 million liters of clean drinking water in rural areas of Kenya and Ethiopia. P&G and CARE issued a media release describing the effort (Download MR WWD Partnership 3.22.12).
“Water is the issue here. It’s number one, number two, and number 3.” I listen intently as Mohammed Mamu, the manager of Save the Children’s Moyale office in Ethiopia, explains the situation here in the epicenter of the Horn of Africa famine. He’s been here for 8 months and will be here for several more to oversee the response to the drought and subsequent famine.