Water.org, Bank of America partner to provide clean, safe water to Southern India
Bank of America has announced a $1-million grant to Water.org in an effort to empower 100,000 people in southern India to obtain safe water and sanitation solutions, accelerating positive change in their homes and communities.
March 24, 2015 -- Bank of America has announced a $1-million grant to Water.org, a global organization providing innovative, community-led and market-based water solutions, in an effort to empower 100,000 people in southern India to obtain safe water and sanitation solutions, accelerating positive change in their homes and communities. This will be achieved through a Water.org program, WaterCredit, which enables people in need to access small loans for water connections and toilets.
According to Water.org, water-related illness worldwide, such as diarrhea, is among the leading causes of death in children under 5 years old, listed with deadly diseases, such as malaria. Moreover, according to the World Health Organization, every dollar invested in water and sanitation generates approximately a $4 economic return. The World Economic Forum, in its recently released 2015 Global Risk Assessment, ranked water crises as the No. 1 global risk in terms of impact on people's health and quality of life (see also: "Water crises now ranked above war as a global risk").
Collecting scarce water in impoverished communities is usually the job of women and girls, often taking hours each day. Similar initiatives have shown that with the availability of clean, safe water, their lives can be transformed: Women have significantly more time to pursue paid work, and girls have more time to attend school. Women constitute 91 percent of WaterCredit borrowers globally.
Water.org stated that the grant from the Bank of America Charitable Foundation will benefit three of its local WaterCredit partners in the region, helping them to provide small loans for families to pay for water access and sanitation. As the loans are repaid, they will become a new, sustainable source of affordable water and sanitation financing in the region.
Through its $70-billion business goal to advance lower-carbon economic solutions through lending; equipment finance; capital markets and advisory activities; carbon finance; and investment advice and solutions for clients globally, Bank of America remains committed to environmental sustainability.
For more than two decades, Water.org has been at the forefront of developing and delivering solutions to the water crisis. Founded by Gary White and Matt Damon, Water.org pioneers innovative, community-driven and market-based initiatives to ensure all people have access to safe water and sanitation, giving women hope, children health and communities a future. To date, Water.org has positively transformed the lives of more than two million individuals living around the world, ensuring a better life for generations ahead. For more information, visit www.water.org.