MSD India, Safe Water Network to provide safe water in AP

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Our News BureauMumbai

MSD India and Safe Water Network announced the launch of a three-year, $1.5 million partnership to increase access to safe water and reduce the impact of water-borne disease among impoverished communities in Andhra Pradesh.
Safe Water Network is a not-for-profit organisation committed to developing locally owned and operated water-purification systems that achieve lasting health impact.
This initiative addresses a critical need in India where an estimated 70 – 80 per cent of the total burden of disease is related to water contamination and poor sanitation, and where more than 1,20,000 children under the age of five die each year from rotavirus diarrhoea alone.
“Clean water is fundamental to the world’s health and to MSD’s mission of fighting disease and helping the world be well. No where is this more true than in India, which faces a significant challenge related to clean water,” said KG Ananthakrishnan, Managing Director, MSD India.
“Our partnership with Safe Water Network is a testament of our commitment to help reduce the impact of water-related illness in India and of MSD’s overall efforts to improve health globally,” Ananthakrishnan further said.
Building on Safe Water Network’s field activities in the area, this collaboration will provide clean water to additional villages in Andhra Pradesh and develop demand generation programmes that seek to increase household usage. Together, MSD and Safe Water Network will also work to increase awareness of the importance of clean water and hygiene to drive behaviour change.
Kurt Soderlund, Chief Executive Officer, Safe Water Network said, “This partnership aims to expand the impact of our safe-water projects. It will accelerate our work to develop solutions that can be broadly replicated. The initiative demonstrates how companies like MSD can play an important role in developing solutions to global water challenges.”
This collaboration is aligned with MSD’s commitment to addressing access to clean water, a key component of the company’s corporate responsibility approach. A signatory to the UN’s CEO Water Mandate, MSD will apply its core business expertise, advocacy efforts and employee social responsibility programs to address access to clean water in India.
Apart from this, MSD India with General Mills have launched Join My Village campaign in India. Join My Village campaign was launched in Malawi in 2009, an innovative social change initiative, which provide girls and women from disadvantaged communities with increased access to education and support, providing a gateway to better opportunities, outcomes and lives.
The innovative click-to-commit social change initiative will give individuals the power to unlock charitable donations from companies like General Mills and MSD to women and girls in Malawi, and now India, through CARE. Every ‘Like’ on the Join My Village Facebook page will trigger a $1 donation from General Mills and The Merck Company Foundation to CARE’s programmes supporting women and girls in India and Malawi. Together, the companies will donate a total of $1.5 million to CARE by the end of 2012.
“Join My Village will be a potent tool to bring women and girls from poor and marginalised communities to the centre stage and equip them with the right tools and opportunities. This will enable them to take control of their lives, which is imperative in the fight against poverty,” said Dr Muhammad Musa, Chief Eexcutive Officer and Country Director, CARE India.

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