Posted by Bernie Janzen on Mar 15, 2019
 

 
 
The Water & Sanitation Rotarian Action Group (WASRAG) was formed in 2007 by a group of Rotarians, recognized by Rotary International, and focused on WASH projects. Since then it has facilitated many hundreds of projects – helping clubs find partners, ensuring sustainability, stressing the importance of a needs-driven approach, and developing best practices. We encourage a holistic, integrated approach in which water is not the end but, is rather the means to a better life and livelihood in the community. Most importantly, WASRAG links water and sanitation to improved hygiene, better health, and empowerment of the community – especially women, irrigation and agriculture, education and literacy and, ultimately, child mortality.
 
Calling all Rotarians
As a Rotarian Action Group (RAG), WASRAG invites Rotarians from around the world to join them and engage in the battle to provide safe water, sanitation and hygiene for all.  Any Rotarian interested in supporting WASRAG can Get Involved with our activities and be Linked to global WASH assistance efforts.
 
 
A Rotarian Action Group ("RAG") is an association of Rotarians from around the world who are dedicated to a, unique area of service.  Members of a RAG conduct hands-on, global service projects that advance the objectives of Rotary International. Each RAG is officially approved and recognized by the RI Board of Directors, but functions independently of Rotary International and sets its own rules, dues requirement and administrative structure. Rotarian Action Groups shall be entitled to use the Rotary Marks, consistent with existing RI policy governing use of the marks. Rotarian Action Groups shall be entitled to communicate with the worldwide network of Rotary clubs, districts, and multi districts as per RI’s communication policy.
 
Vision Statement
Health, education and prosperity for all through safe water, sanitation and hygiene.
 
Mission Statement
Providing human, technical and financial support to Rotary clubs and districts seeking to help communities to gain sustainable access to water, sanitation and hygiene.
 
WASRAG Goals:
  • Access and connect with experts in WASH
  • Provide technical guides for all stages of WASH projects including program life cycle
  • Seek funding outside the Rotary domain to complement internal resources
  • Facilitate connections with other organizations sharing Rotary goals
  • Alert Rotarians to the availability of expertise and financial resources
  • Identify and share Rotary and other resources available to Rotarians.
  • Assist and enable clubs to seek support from other clubs, from TRF and beyond Rotary
  • Ensure clubs can learn of the needs of other clubs
  • Maintain and build a collaborative working relationship with RI and TRF
  • Implement appropriate processes to monitor and evaluate the impact , efficacy and sustainability of Rotary projects and programs
 
Link to WASRAG Project Postings: http://tinyurl.com/y4y2pgna
 
Rotary Focus
Facilitate the exchange of idea and information Clean water, sanitation, and hygiene education are basic necessities for a healthy environment and a productive life.
 
When people have access to clean water and sanitation, waterborne diseases decrease, children stay healthier and attend school more regularly, and mothers can spend less time carrying water and more time helping their families.
 
Through water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH) programs, Rotary’s people of action mobilize resources, form partnerships, and invest in infrastructure and training that yield long-term change.
 

(If you cannot see the video below on your device, click here).

 

 

The Rotary Foundation is changing the world by providing grants for projects and activities around the globe and in your own backyard:
 
Rotary-USAID Partnership: Rotary has partnered with the United States Agency for International Development in Ghana, Madagascar, and Uganda to implement sustainable, long-term programs to improve water supplies, sanitation, and hygiene.
 
WASH in Schools Target Challenge: Rotary has challenged our members to develop sustainable water, sanitation, and hygiene education projects in five countries: Belize, Guatemala, Honduras, India, and Kenya.
WASH projects: Since 2013, The Rotary Foundation has invested in more than 1,000 WASH projects in more than 100 countries. Through grants from The Rotary Foundation and fundraising by Rotary clubs, our volunteers have supported water purification, hygiene education, latrine construction, and waste management.
Schools get help with clean water and hygiene
 
An estimated 2.5 billion people lack access to improved sanitation facilities that hygienically separate human excreta from human contact. Rotarian Alfredo Pérez knows the schools in Guatemala and neighboring countries can use all the help available in this area. The Water, Sanitation, and Hygiene (WASH) in Schools Target Challenge focuses on providing clean water and sanitation systems, and equipping teachers to educate students on better hygiene practices. So, when Carlos Flores, then governor of District 4250 (Belize, Guatemala, and Honduras), asked Pérez in 2016 to get involved with the Water, Sanitation, and Hygiene (WASH) in Schools Target Challenge, he quickly accepted. As the name suggests, the pilot program focuses on providing clean water and sanitation systems, and equipping teachers to educate students on better hygiene practices. “The objective of the project is to develop good hygiene habits in children,” Pérez says. “By reducing absenteeism due to diseases that are acquired due to lack of water, sanitation, and hygiene in schools, we can increase their academic development. Training teachers to help children develop good hygiene habits is key.”
 
Indeed, more than a year after the effort began, the Rotary Club of Valle de Guatemala, where Pérez is a member, has improved conditions for as many as 1,793 children from 10 schools in the town of Escuintla, about 40 miles south of Guatemala City, the capital. Corporación  Energías de Guatemala, an energy company, backed the project with a $62,000 grant. Pérez’s club and the Rotary Club of Escuintla worked with local public health officials and urban and rural planners. The project provided toilets, washing stations, and water tanks, and also supported training for teachers so that the facilities would be put to good use. This year, members of Pérez’s club have a budget of $30,000 for work at five more schools. Pérez is giving talks around his country in hopes of recruiting more clubs to take up the challenge in their communities, and he’s seeking international partners to help expand the program. Educators tell Rotarians that fewer students now miss school because of gastrointestinal and respiratory illnesses, which sometimes spread by poor hand washing or lack of safe water.
 

 

Make an Impact on Clean Water & Sanitation - Clean Water by 2030

(If you cannot see the video below on your device, click here).

 
 
Next week's Program will feature a Water Project in Tototlan, Jalisco, Mexico from "Rotary Serving Our Community" hosted by D5240 PDG and OWR Honorary Member, Wade Nomura.
 
 
 
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