The FINANCIAL -- CINCINNATI, Aug 18, 2011 -- Procter & Gamble and the international
humanitarian organizations Save the Children, Population Services
International (PSI), AmeriCares, Action Against Hunger, GlobalMedic, and
others will provide more than 140 million liters of clean drinking
water to victims of drought in East Africa.
Since June, the region has suffered widespread famine, and 12 million people are in need of immediate relief.
Aid organizations are working on the ground to provide food and shelter, but without clean water, refugees fall victim to dehydration, infection and disease. More than 29,000 children have died across the region in the past three months.
"The drought and famine in East Africa deserve our attention and resources," said Greg Allgood, Director of the P&G Children's Safe Drinking Water Program. "P&G and our partners will help hundreds of thousands of at-risk children and their families by providing clean water to break the cycle of starvation, dehydration and disease."
The effort will provide PUR packets to more than 800,000 refugees without access to clean drinking water. These packets utilize a powder technology developed by P&G that removes contaminants from water while killing viruses and bacteria. The powder is manufactured in small sachets that can be used to treat jugs of local water. Each packet has the ability to purify 10 liters of contaminated water, creating enough clean water for one family for an entire day.
Using its operational abilities and in-country relationships, Save the Children will distribute the packets in the areas of greatest need.
"I am seeing first-hand the urgent need of children to access clean, safe drinking water in the camps. Young children, already weakened by malnutrition, are especially vulnerable to getting water-borne diseases from drinking dirty water, and these diseases can quickly become life-threatening," said Save the Children's CEO and president-elect Carolyn Miles from the Dadaab camp in Kenya. "We are grateful to P&G for stepping in and providing this critical support."
Initial efforts will focus on refugee camps in Ethiopia and Kenya, where PUR distribution programs and supply chains are already in existence. Other partners in the effort will contribute supply chain logistics and behavior change communication expertise.