PepsiCo Foundation Funds Safe Water, Sanitation Programs

PepsiCo Foundation recently gave more than $7 million to WaterPartners and Safe Water Network programs to provide access to safe water and sanitation for individuals and communities in developing countries.

The grants are a component of the ongoing commitment by the foundation to promote and accelerate sustainable approaches to water access, conservation, and usage in underserved regions. This commitment seeks to create awareness and generate change to help achieve the United Nations Millennium Development Goals. In the last year, PepsiCo Foundation and PepsiCo have made more than $16 million in commitments for water projects around the world.

"One of the major goals of PepsiCo Foundation is to develop sustainable partnerships that will bring clean, safe water to populations in need," said Indra Nooyi, chief executive officer and chair of PepsiCo and PepsiCo Foundation. "Our relationships with WaterPartners and the Safe Water Network -- two highly effective organizations with proven leadership and strong community links -- will help create and maintain long-term, secure water supplies, improving the quality of life across these global communities."

The grant to WaterPartners, totaling $4.1 million, is the biggest single contribution to WaterPartners' WaterCredit Initiative. This initiative will establish a microfinance market to enable hundreds of thousands of impoverished people across India to gain better access to water through micro loans. The contribution to WaterPartners will bring clean water to 120,000 people over the course of three years, accelerating and broadening the delivery of safe water in the area. The WaterCredit model improves water access for urban communities, reducing dependence on individuals who often control water supply and charge high prices for water.

The WaterCredit program in India has two main components: first, to provide traditional grant funding directly to local non-government organizations to install pipes, faucets, and storage cellars in impoverished communities, reaching some 60,000 people. The second component is to establish a loan fund that will empower communities to expand access to safe water for an additional 60,000 people over the course of the three-year project. This model produces a "multiplier effect" for impact based on a single source of funding.

The initiative led by the Safe Water Network and supported by the PepsiCo Foundation, in the amount of $3.5 million, involves bringing safe water to households and villages in India, Ghana, and Bangladesh. Working with non-governmental and community organizations and the private sector, the network will address the critical water needs of nearly a quarter million people by supporting the development and implementation of water systems that will reliably provide neglected populations with safe, affordable water. The methods include rainwater harvesting, village-level water systems and "water kiosks." The programs also work to mobilize and educate communities to raise awareness and provisions to create and maintain permanent clean water supplies. The program will receive the grant during a three-year period based on annual progress.

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