WWIF challenges Safe Water Team to a dollar-for-dollar match towards the purchase of 500 filters
Guillermo Guzman's recent visit to Bagliga and neighboring villages in northern Ghana reinforced his desire to do more. Upon his return to the U.S., the founder and CEO of Wishing Well International Foundation (WWIF) contacted Jim Bodenner, Safe Water Team (SWT) executive director, to discuss future collaboration between the two organizations in Ghana and other countries where SWT oversees distribution centers, including Kenya, Haiti, the Dominican Republic and Honduras.
The outcome of the telephone conference was a challenge by WWIF to Safe Water Team to a dollar-for-dollar match toward the purchase of 500 filters from Safe Water Ghana, to be deployed by the end of the year. Each filter delivered and installed in Ghana would cost the foundation $120. With the challenge, it would only have to come up with $30,000 to deploy those 500 filters in Ghana. After discussions with Wendell Christoff, president of SWT, it was agreed they would meet the challenge and partner with WWIF. Upon hearing the news of the challenge, Jerry Graziano, president of Safe Water Ghana, decided to join the challenge and raise an equivalent $30,000 that would go toward infrastructure improvements and equipment to better manage and handle future deployment of filters in Ghana.
“This is a great opportunity for the three organizations to work together and expand their impact in Ghana and, perhaps, other countries,” Guzman said. “In my mind, this was started by the children of St. Paul Lutheran School in Boca Raton [Fla.] and their Bagliga project. We have gone from positively impacting the lives of a few families to potentially impacting thousands of people in Ghana. We are still reaching out to the industry for support to help us continue with our mission. The process has been slow, but it has been rewarding and we continue to make headway.”
Bodenner and Guzman will be attending WQA Aquatech USA 2013 (booth #949) to answer any questions prospective donors and contributors may have. “We would like to take this opportunity to thank the Water Quality Assn. for its support of the foundation by providing us with a booth and the opportunity to reach out to their members,” Guzman said.