CannedWater4kids (cw4k), a 501c3 Nonprofit, Celebrates 10 Years of Helping Children Gain Access to Clean, Safe Drinking Water

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2018 marks the ten-year anniversary of CannedWater4kids (CW4K), a small nonprofit whose purpose is to ensure all children have access to clean, safe drinking water. It also marks the funding of the group’s 10th well project in Zambia, Africa.

Young boys in Africa collecting water

Too many children are dying for a drink of clean, safe water. We're trying to change that.

“It’s hard to believe that it is ten years already,” said Greg Stromberg, Founder & CEO of CW4K. “Every day we learn more about water, and most importantly, the growing scarcity of clean, safe drinking water. I used to think the problem existed only in distant, developing countries. However, as seen in major US cities like Flint, Michigan and Milwaukee, Wisconsin, we see that it affects us all; even here at home,” added Stromberg.

Stromberg commented that the idea for CannedWater4kids came from several places. The first of which, was from his father. “He used to tell me stories about my grandfather who was a dentist during the great depression and how he would fix the teeth of the poor without charging them. I thought this was admirable,” Stromberg said.

Another influence was the late Paul Newman and how he used his Newman’s Own brand to make a difference in helping those in need. The third spark came from a 2007 CanMaker Summit in Chicago, IL. The keynote speaker was a packaging consultant to the United Nations. He asked the CEO’s in attendance what they were doing to help people in developing countries. Specifically concerning the lack of food and water which was unfit to drink. “Everyone was silent. Something inside told me I needed to do something. I needed to make a difference,” said Stromberg. “I had been reading about the global water crisis and how children were dying from complications due to drinking unsafe water. I thought if the children are our future, but they die before they get there - we have no future,” Stromberg added. It was at that moment that CannedWater4kids was born.

“When funding and delivering water projects, sustainability is important to us,” said Peter Gorman, CW4K Board Member and CMO. “We believe in the ‘teach them to fish’ model of relief,” Gorman said. “That way, the deliverables have more value to the recipients and greater potential of living on.”

Whether responding to the American Red Cross and earthquakes in Japan and Haiti, Hurricane Sandy in New Jersey, help for the lead-contaminated municipal water supply in Flint, Michigan, the recent Hurricane Harvey and Irma in Texas and Florida, or Hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico, the 501c3 charity was there with clean, safe drinking water packaged in 12-ounce aluminum beverage cans. To date, CW4K has delivered over 3,000,000 cans of clean, safe drinking water. This tiny nonprofit is leaving its mark and making a difference.

In addition to the disaster relief, CW4K projects include assisting the University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee’s Engineers Without Borders in bringing sustainable water purification solutions to the highlands of Guatemala, and support for sustainable well/water tank and Bio Sand Filter projects in Zambia, Kenya, and Tanzania, Africa. The group also is passionate about clean water education.
“Smiling faces of children is our reward,” said Stromberg.

Already available at several upscale hotels, like the Ritz-Carlton, Laguna Niguel in California and Radisson Red in Minneapolis, MN, cW4K® drinking water in aluminum bottles and cans is also available when visiting America’s national parks like Yosemite, Denali and Mesa Verde.

cW4K packaging contains the phrase, "Drinking water– with a purpose." Why? Because it (a) hydrates you, (b) 95% of the money collected from the sale of the water helps fund and deliver clean water projects, and (c) the aluminum bottle and can are environment-friendly, 100% recyclable virtually forever.

“Aluminum makes perhaps the perfect container for holding drinking water,” added Stromberg. “It resists corrosion and will not rust, it has an airtight seal that keeps what’s inside fresh longer than plastic, and when recycled, returns as new cans on store shelves in as little as 60 days. An added benefit is that the collection and recycling of used cans also allow people to earn money from it.”

The aluminum bottle and can, along with its ease of recyclability, makes cW4k water the perfect replacement for the minimally recyclable plastic water bottles. Washington University, in St Louis, MO replaced their plastic water bottles with cW4k canned drinking water. It was a sustainable campus solution.

The completion of a water project in Lusaka the capital of Zambia Central Africa, delivers clean, safe water to over 400,000 people of the Msisi compound (comprised of mostly children). The clean water will allow for successful agriculture, food, and energy production. Most importantly, it will cut down on waterborne diseases and let the children enjoy healthy development and a better chance at survival.

In Guatemala, cW4k helped fund and deliver a sustainable clean water distribution system that will help to provide clean, safe water to a village for over 20 years.

With the help of the Los Angeles-based and leading entertainment marketing specialists at Hollywood Branded, cW4k water has found placement backstage at the Oscars for three years. CW4k water was served at several movie premieres including, The Emoji Movie, Spiderman, and the Smurfs Movie to name a few. Behind the scenes, cW4k water has been hydrating some of the entertainment industry’s top film and TV production crews. On screen, cW4k has appeared in major movies and TV shows distributed by The Hallmark Channel, ABC, FOX, Netflix, Warner Bros. and other top-tier media outlets. Exciting new placements occur throughout the year, expanding the nonprofit’s brand awareness globally.

cW4k is an active member of Healthier America’s Drink Up Initiative based in Washington, DC.
The nonprofit funds their initiatives with cash donations, sponsorships, private donors and through the sale of their premium drinking water in aluminum bottles and cans. 95 cents of every dollar collected goes to fund, support and deliver clean water programs worldwide.

Available in 12oz aluminum cans and 16oz aluminum bottles, CW4K premium drinking water is perfect for home, boardroom, office meetings, school, hospitality or vending.

cW4K is hoping to acquire a few corporate donors and sponsors to help fund operational costs and day-to-day administrative activities.
To learn more about CW4K and how you can help, please visit http://www.cannedwater4kids.org/howtohelp

About CannedWater4Kids
CannedWater4Kids is a 501c3 charity based in Sussex, WI. The organization’s purpose is to ensure all children have access to clean, safe drinking water. CW4K funds its initiatives with cash donations, grants and through the sale of their premium drinking water in aluminum cans and bottles. 95 cents of every dollar collected goes to support, fund and deliver clean water programs. Projects include assisting the University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee’s Engineers Without Borders in bringing sustainable water purification solutions to the highlands of Guatemala, and support for well/water tank and Bio Sand Filter projects in Zambia, Kenya, and Tanzania, Africa. Recent disaster and hurricane –relief efforts include the sending of truckloads of canned drinking water to Michigan, Texas, Florida and Puerto Rico. To learn more, visit http://www.cannedwater4kids.org.

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Peter Gorman
CannedWater4Kids
since: 01/2011
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