Today is World Water Day and I want to talk about the many different ways you can get involved. Whether you’re wanting to donate to a good cause, or simply looking for ways to conserve water at home, you can make a difference!

Did you know that 844 million people are living without access to clean water? As of 2017, more people owned a cellular phone than a toilet. We’re living in a world where every 90 seconds, a child dies from a water related disease and over 1,000,000 people die annually from water and sanitation diseases. Living in communities where access to water is plentiful, sometimes we’re sheltered to the limitations in our neighbouring countries. The good news – doing your part is easy!

We sat down with our friend, Obakki Foundation founder Treana Peake to learn about how to get involved in the Water Crisis. The Obakki Foundation has provided clean water to over two million people and has drilled and rehabilitated over 1,000 water wells. While the Obakki Foundation works on a number of different programs such as prosthetics, education and agricultural initiatives, they believe that drastic changes in struggling communities start with access to clean water.

Treana is an expert on philanthropy, and has become an expert on the water crisis after over 25 years of travelling to Africa to make change. Treana believes in a modern approach to philanthropy that allows everyone (rich, poor, busy, bored, young, old) to get involved.

SO, here’s what she has to say on World Water Day:

Why Water?

Almost 900 million people globally and 345 Million people in Africa alone live without water. The lack of this basic necessity causes a ripple affect resulting in issues in all other areas of life. Women and children spend their days traveling far distances to find water, which is often contaminated and scarce. Due to the lack of medical support, drinking dirty water often results in death particularly in children and elderly.

What happens is that children are spending their days fetching water, or have fallen ill from dirty water and are unable to attend school. This drastically affects educational growth and societal growth and often results in school completely shutting down due to lack of attendance.

When a community gains access to clean water, it transforms the lives of thousands of people. Children stop fetching water and start going to school, medical support needs diminish, agriculture grows and flourishes, women can sell their produce at local markets, conflict reduces and hope is restored.

How can I help on World Water Day (and every day?) 

Giving back is easy – it only costs $100 to give 20 people clean water FOR LIFE. The Obakki Foundation gives 100% of proceeds to the projects, so that every penny goes towards helping people in need. Donate to their water programs here.

Don’t worry, giving doesn’t have to be monetary. Here are some ways you can conserve water at home:

Install water saving shower heads and ultra-low-flush toilets.
Just turning off the water while you’re brushing your teeth can save up to 8 gallons of water per day. Try not to let the water run when you’re washing your face or doing the dishes.
Take a shorter shower. Showers can use between 6 and 45 litres of water every minute. You can purchase aerated shower heads, which combine water and air and reduces water waste.
Repair leaky taps and faucets indoors and outside. A small drip adds up over time.
Water plants with a watering can rather than with a hose to reduce wasted water AND overwatering. I leave a rain bucket outside, I try to water my plants with the rainwater I collect in the bucket.

So, let’s spend today making an impact, in whichever ways we can.

“You don’t have to give large. You can give of yourself or your time or your money, but you just have to give. You never really know the impact that it might have on someone else’s life. There is a ripple effect to our actions and it all begins with giving.”

Treana Peake, Obakki Foundation Founder