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April 19, 2013

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1 previous review
June 28, 2011

Many years ago, my wife and I had seen pictures of guinea worms boring through to the outside of a child's skin, and we never forgot that picture. After retiring, we were seeking volunteer work to c... more

April 19, 2013

Water Missions is an outstanding charity that grew out of an engineering background. The group has developed portable water treatment plant that can provide filtered and chlorinated water at a rate of 10 gallons per minute. The water is crystal clear and the Cl residue is less than one part per million, enough to kill any bacteria in any container that a villager may bring to fetch water. For very remote villages the system pump can be powered by solar panels and thus does not require access to AC power.

The water treatment plants are assembled by volunteers in Charleston, SC and are shipped to over 26 countries around the world where people do not have access to clean drinking water. Over 300 local volunteers assist in the assembly of the systems in Charleston.

In addition to individual donors, WMI has a number of corporate donors that are generous with both cash and gifts in kind. Solar World supplies solar panels at a reduced cost and donated enough solar panels to operate the Charleston office and mfg. facility on solar power. FedEx helps with shipping, Grundfus, a Dutch pump company, has donated large sums of funds and equipment. WMI is now working as a beta test site with Grundfus to develop a "water meter" that will allow a villager to buy water at a "filling station" using his cell phone and the funds be deposited in the village bank account in Denmark.

In addition to providing safe water, WMI also teaches Health and Hygiene in the communities. This information is used to show the villagers the connection between safe water and good hygiene practices. A new program focused on Community Development has just been launched to help the villages have a clearer understanding of the need to save some funds from the sale of water to maintain and improve the system as the village grows and the equipment ages. Most components of the systems are designed for a 20 year service life.

Along with the safe water, WMI tries to bring the Living Water message of Jesus to the communities served. However, the water is not just provided to peoples willing to listen to the Living Water message.
Water system have been installed in Indonesia and other non christian countries.

This is our 5 trip with WMI, We have spent 3 months in Milawi, Indonesia twice, Peru and Honduras/Mexico.

We appreciate your support!!!!

More feedback...

Would you volunteer for this group again?

Definitely

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

A lot

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Very Well

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

June 28, 2011

Many years ago, my wife and I had seen pictures of guinea worms boring through to the outside of a child's skin, and we never forgot that picture. After retiring, we were seeking volunteer work to contribute in some way to help relieve the water crisis in developing countries. I am a mechanical engineer, and my wife is an educator, so we knew that we had a good skill mix for the work.

In an effort to explore possibilities for us, we looked for opportunities on the web and contacted several organizations but were ignored. A friend mentioned Water Missions International ( WMI) and after one email, we got a prompt response from the head of engineering who asked us to visit the facility in Charleston, SC, and we have never looked back.

The most impressive part of our first visit to WMI was watching VOLUNTEERS assemble water treatment units (Living Water Treatment System - LWTS). We learned that WMI has over 300 volunteers who do most of the work in all facets of the organization and that treatment systems have been installed in 40+ countries which is huge work to be accomplished by a relatively small administrative staff. We also learned that the founders of WMI had a lucrative engineering business they sold in order to clean nasty water in developing countries. We were stunned to know that WMI is totally funded by donations and continues to grow which speaks to the effectiveness any non-profit. That combination of information and the fact that WMI is a Christian organization commanded our respect for WMI. We were also impressed that WMI provides safe water to all people regardless of religion, race, culture or gender.

There are two target areas of work at WMI. Disaster sites anywhere in the world are promptly provided water treatment systems to give people immediate relief from a contaminated water supply. When possible, those same LWTS units are later used for communities in conjunction with sustainable community development projects. The second focus is sustainable community development projects where safe water was the initial impetus for WMI involvement.

As time goes on, we continue to be impressed by WMI with the efficiency of organization, project implementation and financial responsibility that is crucial to effective philanthropy. In working with Water Missions, we are reminded of the cleche, "Never was so much done with so little."

Our assessment of WMI is not from the outside looking in. We have have volunteered for months at a time in Indonesia two times and in Malawi, Africa. ( Please view our book at blurb.com; Search Burton Northam.) We get administrative, technical and moral support from WMI when on assignment.

Other than disaster response safe water systems, sustainable community development projects are a major focus of WMI. As in all successful community development projects, the local people must be committed and involved. Communities, after an assessment based on requirements necessary to have a viable safe water system, are required to organize a Safe Water Committee which ultimately maintains the project after WMI turns the project over to the community at a commissioning service. Based on current research confirming that sustainability requires ongoing funding, a micro-enterprise system that raises funds by charging a small fee for the treated water is also being implemented by WMI. These funds are used to buy consumables, pay a system operator and eventually build another system for a nearby community.

The WMI WASH (Water, Sanitation, Hygiene) program is a vital part of community health training because research shows that providing safe water alone does not improve the sickness/death rate of people if they do not have good sanitation and hygiene practices. The Trainer of Trainers Model is one of the approaches used to equip volunteers in the community to be able to train others, ultimately teaching everyone receiving safe water.

A few paragraphs is totally inadequate space to even begin to explain the numbers of lives (especially children under five years) that have been saved through the work of Water Missions International. We are privileged to be involved with an organization that has such a sincere, deep (and yes, loving) commitment to making a difference in one of the greatest crises the people on this earth are facing, and we appreciate the opportunity to share the work of Water Missions with you.

Photos

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

My wife and I have watched women who previously walked 5-6km each way to get a bucket of contaminated water for the entire family for a day, now walk a short distance for ample safe drinking water. We have seen children return to school who were kept out of school to tote water for the family. We have seen school children drink chlorinated water with big, smiling faces. We have seen whole communities rejoice because, at last, they had safe drinking water!

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

If I could make changes in this organization, I would convince donors that more funding is needed for increasing the WMI administrative staff, purchasing a larger facility for assembly of systems and increasing the inventory of equipment/materials for future disaster relief and sustainable community projects. If becoming the engineering arm of another effective relief organization with the same goals becomes a feasible option, that would further expand and enhance the work of WMI.

September 20, 2012

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September 20, 2012

My son is a volunteer with WMI and had taken a trip to Uganda to document the installation of a water treatment system that was installed in one of the villages there. I have, since his trip, been able to visit WMI twice and see and hear about all they're doing to help those who need clean drinking water and I've been impressed with their professionalism, their friendliness, their commitment to the call to help others, their faith in God to provide more means and more helpers to continue reaching out to more people, some whose very lives depend upon clean water.

More feedback...

Was your donation impactful?

Definitely

How likely is it that you would recommend that a friend donate to this group?

Definitely

How likely are you to donate to this group again?

Likely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

September 20, 2012

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September 20, 2012

I had the opportunity to tour the WMI Facility in Charleston this year. It was a breath of fresh air. Not only as a donor, but as an employee of a nonprofit myself, I am encouraged by the passion and integrity this organization instills in its staff. It was also a pleasure to see exactly what the process of building a water treatment system is like and to see the flag of each country that has been blessed with WMI's presence. That is truly what Water Missions International is - a blessing. This is an organization that I will gladly and confidently donate to for many years to come.

More feedback...

Was your donation impactful?

Definitely

How likely is it that you would recommend that a friend donate to this group?

Definitely

How likely are you to donate to this group again?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

September 20, 2012

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September 20, 2012

Water Missions International strives to change the world, one person at a time. The task at hand is massive and daunting, but with determination and passion, they take on the challenge, and in my opinion, they're winning! It's not everyday that you have the opportunity to be a part of changing somebody's life, forever! But, they make that available to volunteers and employees, alike! All of the water purification systems are built by the hands of people who care. Each system has a plan and purpose. So, when volunteering, it's not simply a "feel good" experience, it's a feeling of knowing that you matter, because you are in the position to let someone else know that THEY matter. The people that Water Missions is serving are deserving of a chance at life, but often don't get that chance, because of sickness and disease, caused by dirty water. Once WMI steps on the scene, there's a sense of hope for those people. Hope for life. Life, which is so frail, has just gotten a little bit better and the future is brighter. That all starts at WMI headquarters. From start to finish, the WMI staff and volunteers work hard, strive hard and love selflessly as they impact the world. It's one thing to drop in, give someone a bottle of water, and leave. It's another thing to move in, live amongst the people, see their pain, experience their joy...and let ALL of that motivate you to do EVERYTHING you can to ensure their chances at living. That is what Water Missions does.

More feedback...

Would you volunteer for this group again?

Definitely

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

Life-changing

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Very Well

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

September 20, 2012

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September 20, 2012

This is the best organization that you can donate to. My family know the owners personally and they are the finest, most upstanding, Christian people that I know. The work that they have done is amazing to me. Please do not think that they only help people in poverished countries. They help wherever there is a problem with the water. That includes the US after Katrina. Please put them on your donation list EVERY year. Your money is well spent and brings LIFE to people who desperately need it.

More feedback...

Was your donation impactful?

Definitely

How likely is it that you would recommend that a friend donate to this group?

Definitely

How likely are you to donate to this group again?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

June 30, 2011

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June 30, 2011

For the past five years I have participated and volunteered for the Water Missions International's annual Walk for Water. the Walk for Water symbolizes what nearly one billion people, mostly women and chldren have to do everyday, just to get water to drink. Plus, it is not even clean water. It is truly a walk with a message. Water Missions builds and distributes water treatment system throughout the world , helping to stop the spread of disease, improve the living conditions of those receiving clean water and to improve the economic conditions of the communities where the treatment systems are installed. And as a faith-based organization, Water Misssions also ministers to the spiritual needs of the people being served. Water misssions has a small but dedicated staff, they are excellent stewards of the donated funds and have a well developed mission and vision for their organization. I have received much more from my involvement with Water Missions than I though possible. Knowing that my efforts helps to made a difference to people around the world, meeting one of the basic necessities of life, has been a humbling but joyful experince. May God bless the work and efforts of Water Missions International.

Photos

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

Helping with the annual fund raising event, the Walk for water. I've also helped with public relations, participating in promotional videos , Media interviews and speaking engagements.

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

help them find a large facility to operate from. Currently they are in very cramped quarters and desperately need more room for staff, officies and water treatment system production.

More feedback...

Would you volunteer for this group again?

Definitely

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

Life-changing

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Very Well

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Definitely

What one change could this group make that would improve your volunteer experience?

Their staff is very busy, so sometimes it is difficult to reach them. They could benefit from larger quarters and some additional people to help with the work load.

Did your volunteer experience have an effect on you? (teaching you a new skill, or introducing new friends, etc.)

I have meet and worked with numerous wonderful people, most whom I now consider dear friends. I have opened up my home, to be a "hotel" for visiting volunteers that come to work for water missions.

How did this volunteer experience make you feel?

I have experienced a great deal of personal satisfaction volunteering with Water Missions; yet at the same time, it is a humbling experience as it makes you realize how fortunate and bless we are to live in a country where you do not have to worry about getting water to drink ...even water that will make you sick, once you get it.

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2011

June 29, 2011

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June 29, 2011

I have been a volunteer with Water Missions International for ten years. During this time I have work on just about every aspect of building the units. I have traveled to seven different countries to install and teach village members how to operate and care for the units. The most rewarding thing for me is when the LWTS starts making clean, clear Living Water and village people understand that it is a gift from God. To see them hold a glass of clear water up to the sky and give The Father the Glory.
It is a great reward for me to work every week with men and women that are strong christians and be in that type of atmosphere.

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

The results I see in this organization can be seen in the people that come on a regular basis to do what ever they are asked. There is not any task that is not worth the effort required to complete it. Just seeing the finished product loaded on a truck and know that someone is going to be much better off.

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

I could not think of any changes in this organization that would maker it better.

June 27, 2011

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June 27, 2011

I helped assemble components of water filters. These water filters get shipped around the world to places that need clean water, and they also educate the people in those communities about why clean water is important and other health related items.

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

seeing the places they take the water filters to, and what a difference it can make in the health of those communities.

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

make room for even more employees and volunteers - this is an awesome organization!

June 27, 2011

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June 27, 2011

This charity is essential to providing clean water in places that would Never be able to provide it for themselves. The impact is has directly on the community is amazing. They also spread the good word of Christ and all that he provides for us. I will not hesistate to take the time to support and go back to Charleston, SC to assist in any manner that i can volunteer. The inidividuals running the organization are simply "First Class" and have their charity at heart in All they Do. A wonderful example for us all.

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

showing me what it is to "provide" for those in need. I had never seen the type of problems that they deal with on a daily basis and how they handle them graciously and with dignity was inspiring to me.

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Couldn't think of any changes. They do a truely wonderful job.

June 26, 2011

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June 26, 2011

TMD Architects is a proud supporter of Water Missions International. In addition to our financial support we have enjoyed the opportunity to volunteer on a weekly basis in the production area and be a part of the annual Walk for Water. We have been drawn to the organize becuase of its mission, passion and strong founding. We are honored to serve the nations of the world through the work done at WMI.

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

WMI does a suberp job of reporting the impact of their work to men, women and children around the world. We have seen first hand water treatment systems leave the production area and learn of the impact they make at their final destination. It is humbling to know that volunteers in Charleston help to send clear water and the living water message around the world.

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

I would love to help Water Missions International's mission and vision spread around the country and world. The impact that they are making is amazing and it is our hope that others know of this impact and become part of their mission.

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