Greetings from Cambodia

I’m so happy to have many great people in my life.  One of the reasons I jumped on the chance to take part in The Clean Fight was because of the work Cordell Jacks and Tamara Baker are doing in Cambodia (and now many other locations).  Their efforts have resulted in the successful installed 17,000 unsubsidized latrines in Cambodia in 16 months.  This project has prompted significant additional donor investment from the World Bank, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, and the Stone Family Foundation to scale nationally in Cambodia, and has laid the foundation for further international expansion.

I asked Cordell to say a few words about the program. Thanks Cordell and keep up the amazing work you, Tamara and your team do. Manitobans are making an impact on world poverty.

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Hello!  I am very happy to be a guest-blogger and supporter of Mavis’ quest for glory in the ring, and even more importantly in her effort to create dramatic impact to the lives of children and their families in developing countries through The Clean Fight.

As a backgrounder, I met and know Mavis through my time at the Asper School of Business at the U of M, and have been fortunate to have kept connected with her over the years and most notably when she visited Cambodia (where I and my partner Tamara live), and where she became aware of the work we do through our organization iDE (International Development Enterprises), to solve the world’s most lagging Millennium Development Goal- the universal human right of access to clean water and sanitation (more than 2.5 Billion people are without this! That’s like 1 of every 4 people on the planet!).

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As you probably already know, The Clean Fight will fundraise to support our efforts, but what you may not have known about the issue are the following:

  • Approximately 10% of global diseases are  preventable with water, sanitation and hygiene improvements
  • Lack of access to adequate Sanitation causes more deaths globally than HIV,  Malaria, and Tuberculosis COMBINED!
  • Lack of access to sanitation is the second largest killer of children under 5 years of age, and that 30% of child deaths worldwide are due to inadequate access
  • Lack of access to clean water and sanitation keeps people sick, and thus keeps people poor
  • We can and will solve this global health, development, and poverty challenge in our generation and lifetime!

We have seen living proof that we will solve this, through the work we have done across 8 countries in Africa and Asia that we have worked in over the last 5 years, since leaving Winnipeg.  We are very proud to be working for iDE (an organization that was co-founded here in Winnipeg, and to date has helped lift over 20 Million people out of poverty) and thank you for the support you are offering to Mavis and to the other contenders who will combat poverty.

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For those of you interested in how we are, and will solve this issue, I urge you to read more about iDE and our innovative approaches to international development in strategies (and most  importantly – sustainably) serving the needs of the ‘Base of the Pyramid’ (the 4 Billion people in developing countries who earn less than $2.50/day) at www.ideorg.org.
Good luck and thanks to you Mavis, and to all of you who are supporting this great event!

Cordell Jacks, Director, Global Water, Sanitation, & Hygiene Initiative, iDE

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Donations can still be made at  http://www.thecleanfight.ca

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