Placer County Foundation Helping to Provide Clean Water to the World
06/03/2015 02:11PM ● Published by Morgan Cásarez
Carrie Beth Bowin, Matthew Watson and Elham Watson – Photos by Dante Fontana © Style Media Group
Following a near-death experience in 2007, Carrie Beth Bowin says she was inspired to serve others. She began by moving to Ecuador and working at an orphanage. The experience was so rewarding that, with the help of friends, she founded her own non-profit organization in 2009, dedicated to affecting positive change in the world. While doing relief work in Haiti following the catastrophic earthquake of 2010, Bowin once again found inspiration.
“People were coming into our clinics suffering greatly from dehydration and parasites. Children were begging us for water,” she explains. “I knew there could be a way to end this needless suffering and that is when our foundation started focusing on water and clean water needs around the globe.”
As executive director of the nonprofit For One Another (FOA), Bowin and her team of mostly volunteers donate Sawyer Point One water filtration kits to orphanages, clinics, schools and small communities throughout North, Central and South America, and India and Africa, while educating children about hygiene. “It’s an amazing thing to be a part of changing the lives of others in the sense that clean water actually saves lives,” says FOA Board Member, Elham Watson. “We have met people who lived with severe health issues due to waterborne illness and as a result of our water filters, experienced a completely improved quality of life.”
According to UNICEF, more than 1.1 billion people lack access to safe and affordable water, while End Water Poverty—a global coalition dedicated to combating the world’s water and sanitation crisis—reports that access to clean water and proper sanitation could save the lives of more than half a million children.
“I know our foundation has saved lives,” Bowin says. “Children in rural areas can go to school because they do not have to walk as far to get water with the solutions that we have made. They also feel better from the clean water that they’re drinking so miss school less frequently. Clean water helps mothers breastfeed their babies and helps fight malnutrition.”
In addition to accepting tax-deductible donations through the organization’s website, Bowin and her supporters are currently seeking volunteers interested in writing grants to secure much-needed funding. “Taste of Loomis,” a local celebration of food, wine, live music and dancing, also benefits the organization. This year’s event will be held Friday, June 19, at the Blue Anchor Stage and Park in downtown Loomis; advance tickets are available on FOA’s website for just $40.
“The number of children who die from lack of clean water just breaks my heart. Everyone deserves the basic human right to have access to [it],” Bowin shares. “I am thankful to have so much, and I’m always up for the opportunity to give back. This life is so much more about giving than receiving. To see someone’s life impacted in so many ways from the hard work that we do is such a blessing.”
For more information, visit foroneanother.org.