Just before Earth Day arrived, the CSDW Program reached another milestone – 12 billion liters of clean drinking water have been distributed around the globe with the help of more than 150 partners. Today there are four generations of Mariam T’s family who are thankful for the power of clean water and the transformation that has taken place over the past 6 years since they started using P&G Purifier of Water. Mariam, shown in the photo above with her granddaughter Donah, and her great-grandson, 5 month old Ryan, joined the celebration with the staff at Alive Medical Services in Kampala.
Mariam is a 58-year old mother of 3, grandmother to 5, and recently became a great grandmother. She lives in a poor and densely-populated slum area of Namuwongo which is located alongside a railway line in Kampala. Her family accesses water from a nearby well that is severely contaminated and a threat to the community’s health, especially the youngest children and those living with compromised immune systems.
As a client at Alive Medical Services (AMS), Mariam has been a dedicated user of the P&G packets since 2010. AMS is located about a 20 minute walk from her home and provides compassionate, comprehensive and integrated HIV care for more than 16,000 clients.
She is dedicated to ensuring better health care for her family by providing clean water for drinking and cooking that is made possible through the partnership between P&G and AMS. Mariam depends on food vending as a source of income to support her family but this was a limited source of money over the years. In the past, the expense for charcoal to boil water for drinking was another drain on her income. Her family members used to suffer from various waterborne diseases that became too costly to treat in terms of medical care. But ever since she started using P&G packets, not only has she managed to keep her family healthy, but she has also been able to save money that she has channeled into her bead-crafting business. While living a vibrant life and keeping herself healthy, Mariam has been educating other community members about P&G Purifier of Water. She reaches out to and educates others, especially those who are HIV-positive, so that they can benefit like her family has. She wishes for her oldest granddaughter Donah to fulfil her dream of becoming an engineer by having a chance at an advanced education, and to make Namuwongo a healthier place to stay for the other residents of this poor community.
Special thanks to AMS’s 2017 Global Health Corps fellows for translating Mariam’s story for our CSDW blog. Global Health Corps was founded by Barbara P. Bush and is a fellow CGI commitment maker like CSDW.
In addition to celebrating with Mariam and her family, we recognized this moment at an event with our with our safe drinking water partners including PACE (PSI Uganda), Alive Medical Services, ChildFund, FXB Uganda and the Ministry of Water and the Environment.
Dr. Pasquine Ogunsanya, Founder & Medical Director of AMS and Dr. Dorothy Balaba, Country Representative for PACE spoke about their organizations’ work with P&G Purifier of Water packets over the past 12 years. Former classmates from their medical residency days, these impressive women lead innovative programs that are making a meaningful and measurable impact on the health of thousands of Ugandan families every day. Together they spoke about their work and the critical importance of clean drinking water for people with compromised immune systems like Mariam and two other special guests Alex and Olivia.
If you have followed this CSDW Blog for many years, you might remember the “7 Wonders of PUR” from a blog about Alive Medical Services in 2011. Alex (the author of the 7 Wonders) and Olivia, a Community Health Worker at AMS, did an excellent demonstration during the event showing how the P&G packets work. Alex even shared her list of 7 wonders with the large collection of media and guests.
As the P&G CSDW Program celebrates 12 Billion liters, we have 3 billion more liters to go to reach our goal of 15 Billion liters delivered by 2020. We’re accelerating our progress and as we expand our partnerships and increase production of the P&G packets at our plant in Singapore, we’re as committed as ever to transforming lives through the Power of Clean.