Safe Water Network’s 15th anniversary Ball celebrated, achievements in India highlighted

Some of the attendees at the Water for All Ball Nov. 8, 2022, at Gotham Hall, NYC, hosted by Safe Water Network. Photo: Ben Hider, courtesy Safe Water Network

Safe Water Network, the global non-profit, co-founded by late actor and philanthropist Paul Newman, hosted the annual Water for All Ball on November 8, 2022, at the iconic Gotham Hall in New York City.

The funds raised at this year’s event will assist Safe Water Network ( achieve their goals of improving access to safe water for 50 million people by 2026, a press release from organizers said.

The event was co-hosted by Dr. Rita Colwell, 11th Director of the National Science Foundation, and Dr. Surya Mohapatra, former president, and CEO of Quest Diagnostics.

The annual ball kicked off with a “blue carpet,” hosted by TV/radio personality Guy Lambert, followed by speeches from honorees, Catherine Coleman Flowers, and Angelique Kidjo, and concluded with performances by Angelique, Amos Lee, and CeeLo Green.

Since 2009, Safe Water Network has worked closely with social entrepreneurs, women’s groups, implementers, and government agencies, to promote sustainable last-mile safe water solutions in India, the press release said.

“Safe Water Network’s decentralized model reaches nearly two million people across Ghana and India, while collaborating with both international and local partners to reach millions more,” the press release added.

The iJal Women’s Empowerment Program  piloted in the State of Telangana’s Medak district, promotes female entrepreneurship by linking self-help groups (SHGs) to new sources of income. Safe Water Network trains and equips women, who previously collected unsafe water for their families, with the skills and resources to become iJal operators also known as, “Water Aunties.” Safe Water Network and USAID pioneered the ‘Water Aunties’ program helping to develop women social entrepreneurs in water ATMs breaking the gender roles and poverty cycle, the press release said.

According the organization, the women’s role as safe water advocates transforms the health and wellbeing of their communities, generates livelihoods, and elevates their role in society.

During the Ball, the organization emphasized how climate change is exacerbating current water access challenges, particularly water quality. In India, the teams are implementing automatic chlorination and pond rejuvenation to promote groundwater recharge by regenerating water bodies.



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