Global Water Challenge

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Global Water Challenge (GWC) describes itself as "a diverse coalition of leading organizations providing creative and sustainable solutions for universal access to safe drinking water and sanitation." Its partners include "leading business, NGO [non-governmental organizations] and government organizations." [1]

GWC has projects in Mexico, Rwanda, South Africa, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, India, Kenya, Nicaragua and Tanzania. [2]


The Global Water Challenge's partners, or members, include: [3]


In 2006, "Global Water Challenge (GWC) was launched with initial funding from The United Nations Foundation, The Coca-Cola Company (TCCC), The Dow Chemical Company (Dow), Cargill, and Wallace Genetic Foundation." Also in 2006, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation awarded GWC a $9.5 million grant for work in Kenya. [4]

In 2008, the Clinton Global Initiative "announced a 'Water and Sanitation Mega-Commitment' by an alliance that includes the Global Water Challenge (GWC), WaterPartners, and the Water Supply & Sanitation Collaborative Council." As part of the commitment, the Clinton Global Initiative gave $25 million to GWC, "to help fund new innovative projects found through the competition by Ashoka." [5]

PR for member companies

"Coca-Cola helped launch [GWC] in 2004 amid allegations that the company had depleted and polluted groundwater supplies near one of its plants in India," reported Greenwire. "Coca-Cola's commitment to water projects has increased substantially in the last few years. The company already has donated about $17 million so far this year, up from $11.3 million in 2006." [6]

As Coca-Cola's UK and Ireland president, Sanjay Guha, explained at a 2008 marketing conference, programs like GWC allow the soda giant to claim, under the umbrella of its "live positively" corporate social responsibility program: "Just by drinking Coke, you're giving your community a helping hand." [7]

Coke's funding of clean-water projects is "part of a broader strategy under Chairman and Chief Executive E. Neville Isdell to build Coke's image as a local benefactor and global diplomat," reported the Associated Press in 2007. "While Coke has won some praise from global water experts, others complain that it could do much, much more given the company's huge size and insatiable thirst to convert consumers in developing countries into Coke drinkers. Coke's water efforts are 'nothing more than a public-relations exercise,' scoffs Amit Srivastava, director of the India Resource Center, one of the most vociferous critics of Coke's water use in India." [8]



As of April 2009: [9]

Board of Directors

As of April 2009: [10]

Contact details

Global Water Challenge
1001 Connecticut Ave.
Suite 925
Washington DC 20036

Phone: 202-457-0960

SourceWatch resources

External links


  1. "About us: Mission," Global Water Challenge website, accessed April 2009.
  2. "Our programs: Project list," Global Water Challenge website, accessed April 2009.
  3. "Member list," Global Water Challenge website, accessed April 2009.
  4. "Member list," Global Water Challenge website, accessed April 2009.
  5. "Clinton initiative focuses on clean water, sanitation," Water and Waste Water International, October 1, 2008.
  6. Katherine Boyle, "Role of corporate giving grows in Third World projects," Greenwire, October 14, 2008.
  7. Joe Thomas, "UK imports Live Positively scheme," Marketing, October 8, 2008.
  8. Betsy McKay, "Why Coke aims to slake global thirst for safe water," The Associated Press, March 15, 2007.
  9. "About us: Staff," Global Water Challenge website, accessed April 2009.
  10. "About us: Board," Global Water Challenge website, accessed April 2009.


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