Aveda and Global Green Grants Fund: Providing Clean Water in India

my worldgiving organizations

I’m writing this post from India—from the foothills of the Himalayas to be precise. The green forests, blue skies, and mountain views are breathtaking. You’d think with all of this foliage that water would not only be abundant but would be pure. Not so.

India is famous for its monsoons. Three months out of the year, rain is plentiful. But when it stops, the ground dries up and while the forests are still vibrant, the earth is dusty. What this means for people in remote villages who have inadequate water retention and purification systems, is long walks to the source of the water supply for an attempt at getting clean water. Or worse, drinking from contaminated sources. Worldwide 1 in 7 goes without clean water. And in India, it isn’t any different.

Each year, Aveda, in partnership with Global Green Grants Fund, holds a monthly fund raiser in April for Earth Month, where they sell candles and donate 100% of the proceeds to cleaning up water worldwide. Sometimes as a busy mom I wonder what I can do to make a difference. I often think buying products like this couldn’t possibly make an impact.  I mean, it’s just one candle, right? Wrong!

This year alone, with the help of its customers, Aveda raised $3.7 Million. When you think of buying one candle, it doesn’t seem like a big deal. But, one candle plus one candle times all the candles sold makes cleaner water a possibility for many.

One such village that benefits from these candle sales is the Tiwalri Village in India. I had the opportunity to join Aveda on the adventure of a lifetime and visit this village yesterday.

What I love about what Aveda and Global Green Grants’ initiative in Tiwalri is their holistic approach. The outreach wasn’t an in-and-out approach or the give-a-man-a-fish philosophy. It was inside out and systemic, involving leaders on down in the community. They thought of all the possible red flags and involved people in the community to brainstorm solutions. They went the route of education up to implementation with one goal in mind: sustainability, ensuring that the water supply would exist long after Aveda left.

Imagine your basic need to have clean water. Now imagine the impossible task of making that a reality. Then, imagine two organizations making that possible not only for you, but for your entire city. Think of the gratitude you would feel when those organizations came to your remote location to spend a day with you. The smiles and appreciation were heartwarming. The stories were amazing.

Whether you are buying a candle to support clean water worldwide or supporting organizations in other ways, my experience yesterday taught me that small and simple steps lead to major accomplishments.

Photo Courtesy of Flickr.com.
Thanks to Aveda for sponsoring my trip to India!
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An active part of the Mom It Forward team, Jyl primarily writes about parenting, social good, and all things travel related. In a past life, Jyl was an award-winning copywriter and designer of corporate training programs for Fortune 100 companies. Offline, Jyl is married to @TroyPattee; a mom to two teen boys and a beagle named #Hashtag; loves large amounts of cheese, dancing, and traveling; and lives in the beautiful Rocky Mountains. Topping her bucket list is the goal to visit 50 countries by the time she's 50.


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