GSP has reached a milestone and the key to our success is the generosity of our Global Village and we want to “Thank you” for celebrating GSP’s 5th Year Anniversary on World Water Day on March 22nd! Our efforts to give the gift of clean and safe drinking would not be possible without YOU! We are proud to announce that our goal of installing 1,000 filters is becoming a reality! After two years of planning, our GSP staff and Tanzania in-country partners have conducted training and installation of our HydrAid® BioSand Filters in the homes of 45 families with family members living with HIV. An additional 55 filters are earmarked for the disabled, pregnant women and the elderly, expanding our efforts to provide access to clean and safe drinking water for the community, bringing our total filters to 680! We are also integrating our WASH practices to expand our Integrated Health Model (IHM) to provide women and their families’ access to effective simple health interventions, and prevention information and services. The services include screening and education programs to help reduce HIV and sexually transmitted infections, unintended pregnancies, tuberculosis, hypertension and diabetes. The combination of installing filters in households and health facilities and providing health information and services, encourages cultural and behavioral changes, which ensures long-term safety practices and promotes the growth of stronger and healthier communities.
We have served with love in our hearts and pure determination and as a result, we have changed thousands of lives in Tanzania (please check out our videos)! However, for all of this growth and change — we need to continue to raise money for an additional 320 HydrAid® BioSand Filters (BSF), so we can reach our goal of installing 1,000 filters in 5 years! The filters are $260 and with your investment, together we can continue to yield real and lasting change, because once the filters are installed, clean and safe drinking water will begin to flow for 10 years to come! In addition, our “Message in a Bottle” campaign was so successful we need more BPA free water bottles! They are a twofer – $12 – we need 5,000! No donation is to small, so please spread the word and ask your family, friends, colleagues, and donate on our website today!
We have a sustainable business model that can be duplicated throughout Africa, because we have a track record of saving lives! The key to our success is we focus on respecting cultural norms, community input (especially working with women and girls) and through project implementation we use local sourcing, local contractors and vendors, supplies and staffing, which puts money back into the local economy – generating additional community support. But, our secret ingredient is follow-up, follow-up, follow-up and follow-up via text, calls and in person visits to ensure long-term practices and promotes the growth of stronger and healthier communities. The combination of installing filters in households and health facilities and providing health information and services encourages cultural and behavioral changes, which ensures long-term safety practices and promotes the growth of stronger and healthier communities. Water underpins health, nutrition, equity, gender equality, well-being and economic progress, especially in developing countries. Having safe drinking water and basic sanitation are human needs and rights for every person. These needs are essential in breaking the cycle of poverty, since they directly impact health. If we can “give women access to clean and safe drinking water they are more likely to be healthier, allowing them to work, spending their money on their families and their future, which increases the rates of their children staying in school (especially girls), literacy, improved health and better nutrition. These investments by women will promote economic and social development, which is needed to change the short and long-term well being of their families and communities in which they live and work. Thus, reducing poverty and eliminating the opportunity for “opening the door” for ISIS, Al-Shabaab and Al queada, to recruit teenage boys/young men in some African countries!
Did you know that many life-threatening opportunistic infections are caused by inadequate access to safe drinking water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH)? 88% of cases of diarrhea are caused by poor WASH. That is why our “Water is the Life-Line of Life” Initiative transfers knowledge and skills through training and education in the construction and maintenance of the HydrAid® BioSand Filters and the overall education of health, sanitation and hygiene practices for children in primary and secondary schools, households and health care facilities in the United Republic of Tanzania. Our “Water is the Life-Line of Life” Initiative is a sustainable business model that can be duplicated across Africa, Latin America and the Caribbean, because we focus on respecting cultural norms/community input; and through project implementation, we use local sourcing, local contractors and vendors, supplies and staffing, which puts money back into the local economy –generating additional community support. But, our secret ingredient is follow-up, follow-up, follow-up and follow-up via text, calls and in person visits to ensure long-term use.
How GSP is Helping: The combination of installing filters in schools, households and health care facilities not only helped close the gap of recontamination – it also encourages cultural and behavioral changes, which ensures long-term practices and promotes the growth of stronger and healthier communities. In addition, the filters eliminate the need to burn unsustainably harvested wood to boil and purify the water, cuts greenhouse gas emissions and indoor pollution.
The HydrAid® BioSand Filter (BSF) represents the culmination of nearly two decades of development and research conducted around the world by leading experts and is now recognized by the World Health Organization, (WHO) UNICEF and USAID. Hydraid® filters use elegantly simple sand filtration to purify water. With proper use, they remove 99.999% of parasites, 90%-99.0% of bacteria, and 80%-99.9% of viruses. The filters are suitable anywhere, installation is easy, and there are no moving parts to repair or replace. In addition, no electricity or plumbing is required because the filtration units are gravity-fed.
Our School Gardens: We have launched our hydroponic learning vegetable garden program, designed to emphasize nutrition education, sustainable organic agriculture and food safety in our schools – another tool essential to breaking the cycle of sickness and poverty.
GSP’s novel strategy worked: After four years of building relationships (e.g. national and local government, local leaders, Village Elders, in-country partners, women’s groups), hosting community meetings and training’s and working in the schools and communities to see what does and does not work, and then taking proactive steps to ensure that the filters would take firm hold in the schools — we now know firsthand that education, community health, and environmental benefits (especially among women and girls), can be improved significantly through relatively easy initiatives that are taught, implemented and sustained within schools and the community at large. We developed demand, local cooperation and buy-in and moreover, the community appreciated our efforts to focus on project implementation through using local sourcing, local contractors and vendors, supplies and staffing, which put money back into the local economy –generating additional community support.
Our built in Workforce: To ensure long-term practices, GSP created a network of health trainers via teachers who bring the education back to their classrooms/communities. Those dedicated teachers’ have demonstrated their commitment to helping improve the quality of life for their students, while empowering women to create more educated and healthier communities. Their support has raised awareness and created more demand for the filters – who best to provide behavior change initiatives than those dedicated people who live and work in their own communities?
Sustainability Business model for women: No loans necessary. We partnered with a local bank, who helps women set-up saving accounts; they provide training to teach them how to communicate with a teller, how to use mobile banking and how to use other banking tools — a “win win” partnership for attracting new account holders and promote/support positive long-term social and behavioral changes. How it works: We’ve created a payment structure. Women who want to purchase a filter for their homes have to give up their cell phone (if there are 2 in the home) for 2-8 months (depending on how long it takes them to save for it). The money they use to buy a voucher will now be put into a savings account, which teaches them how to save for their filter and other household goods and goals after the filters has been purchase. It also teaches them to invest in the overall health of their families.
GSP is Expanding: Our Integrated Health Model (IHM): (e.g. water, health and environment) program is a comprehensive health services delivery mechanism for both preventive and curative services that will improve health social marketing and health social behavioral change activities. We help communities move beyond tropical and infectious disease crisis intervention and address the root causes of contamination and promote sustainable solutions to create healthier and more educated communities. GSP treats community development as a health promotion strategy and develops culturally appropriate, community-based action, and prevention strategies with environmental benefits programs.
How Our IHM Works: We have learned from our track record in the country that sustainability and localization of efforts are key and thus these themes run throughout the entire design of the IHM project. Introducing the IHM gives GSP a perfect opportunity to scale up our efforts to educate our communities about effective simple health interventions and prevention information and services (e.g. help reduce HIV and sexually transmitted infections, pregnant mother-to-child transmission (PMTCT), unintended pregnancies, cervical cancer prevention through the immunization of girls via the HPV vaccine, TB, hypertension and diabetes screening and morbidity), as we work directly in their homes and health facilities (installing Hydraid filters), which gives us access to women, children and men. Integrating health services will improve access to healthcare and health indicators by developing a client-friendly approach in which multiple health deterrents will be addressed in the home of the beneficiary or during a single clinic visit. Therefore, the ability for individuals to do “one-stop-shopping” in the privacy of their own home will result in improved health outcomes and will also help reduce the stigma associated with free-standing clinics that treat HIV and sexually transmitted infections alone.
Empowering women and our girls: GSP will focus on expanding our efforts to empower women and girls through education/training, technology, energy, telecommunications and community development/outreach initiatives. We aim to improve the overall health and quality of life for women (and their families) and promote sustainable community development solutions that aides in empowering women to establish“green” jobs and sustainable locally owned businesses that will generate income for their families.
Our Global Village Partners: GSP is increasing focus on IHM projects in communities that are connected to our partners. Our projects enable partners to reach their Global Goals for Sustainable Development, which are all about the 5 P’s: People, Planet, Prosperity, Partnership and Peace! These initiatives, solidifies our reputation as a sustainability leader – where we are already focusing on sustainability efforts. We want our communities to know our clients care about the welfare of their communities/workforce and know that “doing the right thing” in communities in which they work is vital to business success.
To learn more about how you can be instrumental in making a project happen, please contact Kimberly L. Fogg at firstname.lastname@example.org or at (404) 909-2428. Please also visit our Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/gspartnerships/