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Help Turn Wine Into Water

February 2003
Help Turn Wine Into Water

Atlanta, Ga ? WaterPartners International will host its first Water for Life reception in Atlanta on Thursday, March 20 at 7 p.m. at the World Trade Center - Atlanta. The purpose of the reception is to raise funds for a safe water system in Sakkampatti, a rural community in Southern India. The World Trade Center ? Atlanta and the Indian Professionals Network (IPN) are co-hosting the event.

This wine tasting event will feature wines from Banrock Station, an Australian winery, and a silent auction with Delta roundtrip tickets and wine-related art and other items donated by local businesses. Renowned wine educator Michael Gallant, the ?wine guy? at Toulouse restaurant and on the Atlanta Cooks radio show, will present and discuss the wines.

Funds raised at the event will provide the materials needed to construct the water system that will bring clean water to the rural Indian community?s residents. The 800 residents of Sakkampatti are committed and ready to pay some of the capital costs to build this system and 100 percent of the fees to maintain it. There?s only one thing that stands in their way?the remaining capital to build it.

The goal of the Water for Life event is to raise $20,000 to complete the funding for this sustainable community water supply project. Suggested funding levels are $60, $120, $250, $500, or $1000 per person. Corporate sponsors are also welcome.

Families in Sakkampatti struggle to meet their daily water needs. Twenty-one families use an open well; there are also four hand pumps in the village. However, only two of the hand pumps are functioning. The wastewater and sanitation system is also very poor. The existing water system was not constructed with proper masonry structures or drainage. Thus, sewage is stagnating in the streets. Open defecation is routinely practiced. The WaterPartners-funded project will replace the existing water system and will include a community sanitation block.

The people of Sakkampatti are not aware of how diarrheal diseases can be prevented through improved hygiene. The WaterPartners-funded project will include training in hygiene, health promotion, financial management, and maintenance of the system

WaterPartners International is a non-profit organization committed to providing clean drinking water to communities in developing countries. Since 1990, WaterPartners has supported projects in 52 communities benefiting more than 22,000 people in Latin America. They expanded work to Asia in 2001. All of the projects WaterPartners has supported are still in operation.

For more information about the reception, call 404-874-7972, email atlanta@water.org, or visit the Web site at.

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