World Vision announces $200 million Clinton Global Initiative Commitment focusing on Girls, Women and Water

From World Vision:

New York, NY, September 22, 2011—Global relief and development leader World Vision announced today a six-year, $200 million effort in its 2011 Clinton Global Initiative (CGI), focused on expanding the life-changing impact of safe water on women, girls, and their communities. Building on its two decades of experience in water, sanitation and hygiene, as well as its recently completed five-year West Africa Water Initiative (WAWI) in Ghana, Mali and Niger, the Christian humanitarian organization seeks to directly impact some 6.6 million people across 10 African countries.

“We have seen just how critical access to safe water, sanitation and hygiene is for women and girls—not only to their daily health and personal safety, but also to enable them to invest in their education and future,” said Richard Stearns, President of World Vision United States and attendee at this week’s CGI Annual Meeting in New York City.

With its expertise in issues that affect women and girls in developing communities, World Vision expects its expanded water, sanitation, and hygiene interventions to not only improve child and maternal health and nutrition status, but also enhance family livelihoods, household savings, school attendance, and the ability to learn, especially among girls.

“World Vision understands that for sustainable change, we must combine the essential ‘software’ ingredients of community engagement and behavior change with the ‘hardware’ of borehole wells, catchment systems and other interventions,” said Rudo Kwaramba, World Vision’s national director in Uganda, who along with Stearns will be honored at CGI’s commitment presentation today. “And in all of this, women’s ownership and full participation is essential so they are empowered to invest further in the health, education, and well-being of their families and communities.”

World Vision’s new commitment is especially timely given the historic drought in the Horn of Africa, which is affecting more than 13 million people. As part of its CGI commitment, the aid agency is responding urgently to the emergency water needs in Kenya, Ethiopia, and Uganda, as well as Somalia. World Vision will also carry out water and sanitation projects in the region that help preserve livelihoods and mitigate the effects of the drought.

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