Clean water campaign to support projects in several new communities worldwide

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GENEVA, SWITZERLAND, April 22, 2014 -- Giorgio Armani, in partnership with Green Cross International (GCI), is expanding its Acqua for Life campaign for the fourth consecutive year, targeting water-scarce communities in West Africa, Latin America and, for the first time, the South Asian nation of Sri Lanka to provide sustainable drinking water systems that will benefit thousands of people. 

The goal of the campaign is to support the development of water systems in new communities in Africa (Ghana, Ivory Coast and Senegal), Latin America (Bolivia and Mexico), and Asia (Sri Lanka). It is also a timely milestone ahead of the next Universal Exposition: 2015 Milan Expo, the theme being "Feeding the Planet, Energy for Life".

Launched in 2011, Acqua for Life has, in its first three years, raised funds for the successful implementation of water pumps, wells and rainwater harvesting systems in more than 60 communities and schools throughout Ghana, Bolivia, Mexico, and China, providing around 150 million liters of water per year. 

Acqua for Life generates funds for GCI's Smart Water for Green Schools project, which has been installing water systems in schools and communities living in water poverty in Africa, Latin America and Asia since 2010. Through the construction of water supply systems in communities and rainwater harvesting systems in school compounds, the two organizations ensure that community members, particularly women and children, have sustainable access to safe water.

Accordingly, in water-scarce communities, it is often the role of school-aged children to fetch water from distant, often unsafe, water sources, forcing their absence from class and also posing health and security concerns. This is also true for women, who are traditionally responsible for collecting water for their families.

The Acqua for Life projects, developed between 2011 and 2013, have improved the lives of several thousands of women, while helping increase school enrollment. In the Bolivian villages of the Municipality of Charagua, school attendance has increased thanks to the installation of these new water facilities. Large increases, particularly of girls, have been recorded in Ghanaian communities that have benefited from Acqua for Life. For the first time, Sri Lanka, Ivory Coast and Senegal will benefit from the Acqua for Life in 2014.

In Sri Lanka, the remote village of Pulawala, in the Eastern Province district of Amara, is home to around 1,000 people who face severe water shortages during the April-October dry season. During this period, people -- routinely children -- must walk 10-15 kilometers to retrieve water for their families. 

In 2014, Ivory Coast and Senegal will join neighboring Ghana -- where Acqua for Life was launched. In Ghana, Acqua for Life expanded from rural communities into urban areas in 2013, installing mechanized boreholes to provide water to residents of the Aboabo slum, in Ghana's second biggest city of Kumasi. 

In Latin America this year, Green Cross and Giorgio Armani are supporting water-scarce communities in Bolivia and Mexico. Acqua for Life provided 27 Bolivian communities with sustainable water supplies during 2012 and 2013 and two Mexican villages in the state of Morelos (Santo Domingo Ocotitlán and Amatlán de Quetzalcoatl) in 2013. 

See also:

"Perfume for water campaign raises over 43 million liters of water for Ghana"

"Drinking water, sanitation program expands in Ghana"

"Smart Water project in Africa"

About Acqua for Life

Acqua for Life is a campaign by Giorgio Armani to support the UNICEF Tap Project in an effort to help UNICEF improve access to safe, clean water for children around the globe. For every person who "likes" Acqua for Life on Facebook, Giorgio Armani will donate $1* to support the UNICEF Tap Project, up to 100,000. With $1, UNICEF can provide a child with 40 days of safe, clean drinking water. For more information, visit www.acquaforlife.org.

About Green Cross International

GCI was founded in 1993 and is an independent non-profit and nongovernmental organization advocating and working globally to address the inter-connected global challenges of security, poverty eradication and environmental degradation through advocacy and local projects. GCI is headquartered in Geneva, Switzerland, and conducts on-the-ground projects in more than 30 countries around the world. For more information, visit www.gcint.org.

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