Daily Management Review

The Cigna Foundation selects Water for People for its $100,000 grant


04/06/2015


The Cigna Foundation has selected Water for People as a recipient for its $100,000 grant. Water for People is in the business of sustainable development and maintenance of water related issues through the active participation of local communities, thereby not only changing people’s lives, but bringing about a holistic change in their local economies as well.



Although 71% of our world is covered in water, almost 1.8 billion people lack access to safe drinking water, 35% of our population lacks basic sanitary necessities, 50% of all patients in hospitals suffer from waterborne diseases and almost 3.4 million humans die from water-borne diseases. Water is a source of life, it is also one of today’s greatest challenge.

As a step towards managing this precious resource, The Cigna Foundation has announced a $100,000 grant to Water for People, a Denver based NPO. Water for people supports sustainable development of water resources, conducts educational programs related to hygiene and creates sanitation facilities in India, Bolivia, Honduras, Peru, Malawi, Guatemala, Uganda, Nicaragua, and Rwanda.
“With Water For People, the Cigna Foundation is looking to help those around the globe who lack the basic essentials of safe water and sanitation, which are fundamental to good health”

With the help of this grant, by 2018, Water for People can help four million people across nine countries. Moreover, Cigna’s finance and health experts will assist Water for People in measuring the impact of its programs. In this way, this collaboration between the two will be able to redress some of the financial challenges related to repairs & maintenance of water systems.
“With Water For People, the Cigna Foundation is looking to help those around the globe who lack the basic essentials of safe water and sanitation, which are fundamental to good health. We believe it’s inexcusable that half of the world’s hospital beds are filled with people suffering from waterborne disease, and 3.4 million people a year are dying from water-related disease. We share Water For People’s vision that one day, every family, every school and every clinic will have access to safe water and sanitation.”

In order to create a sustainable self-sufficient model, at a grass root level, Water for People, uses local community members and trains them on how to build, repair and maintain on-going operations. Even materials are sourced locally and all of this ensures that the local community has the capability to maintain their own sanitation and water related systems.

Videos are available which shows Water for People’s sustainable approach. It believes that the community must be actively involved right from the planning stage itself, in order to ensure that the implementation and maintenance of water systems run are sustainable. The commitment of local beneficiaries are key.

Such sustainable developmental work impact not only a single community but an entire district as well. Safe drinking water and basic sanitation can transform local economies. The elderly and the weak, the children of the community are less likely to succumb from basic water-borne diseases. The children can then attend school, and grow up to be local entrepreneurs creating local business a services related opportunities. It can be a game changer for so many people.

With 22nd of March being universally recognized as World Water Day, Cigna has taken the lead in urging everyone to think about the world’s supply of fresh water. As per its annual CSR report, Cigna has already set environmental reduction goals, which amongst others, include a three percent reduction target by 2017. This is as per its annual CSR report

References:
http://www.csrwire.com/press_releases/37355-Cigna-Releases-Company-s-First-Corporate-Responsibility-Report- -
http://newsroom.cigna.com/NewsReleases/Cigna-Foundation-Taps-Water-For-People-as-Recipient-of-World-of-Difference-Grant.htm







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