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Coca-Cola Foundation Donates Nearly $500K to Decrease Water Poverty

Coca-Cola sent two grants to the Global Water Center to support initiatives dedicated to lowering worldwide water poverty.

Solar powered water system
Part of Coca-Cola's donation will provide solar-powered water systems training to government engineers and consultants from the Rural Drinking Water and Sanitation Department in Karnataka, India.
Global Water Center

The Global Water Center has received two grants worth $499,439 from the Coca-Cola Foundation to support multiple initiatives that will utilize training, technology, and relationships to create sustainable, local solutions for water problems worldwide.

“The Coca-Cola Foundation’s generosity has significantly accelerated the Global Water Center’s ability, and that of our partners, to help more people have access to safe and reliable drinking water,” says Thomas Johnston, CEO of the Global Water Center. “This grant will allow the Global Water Center to more effectively share knowledge and resources with individuals, organizations, and governments that will strengthen their ability to deliver safe water where it is most needed.”

Initially, the Coca-Cola Foundation awarded the Global Water Center with a grant of $349,939 to provide solar-powered water systems (SPWS) training to government engineers and consultants from the Rural Drinking Water and Sanitation Department in Karnataka, India.

GWC’s training method involves equipping master trainers with the skills to train 300 to 500 engineers who will go on to train thousands of their colleagues in SPWS. This will support the government of Karnataka’s ability to achieve its goal of supplying safe water to all 60+ million people in the state.


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Later, the Coca-Cola Foundation gave the Global Water Center an additional $149,500 to support the delivery of online courses, create new capacity building material, and provide technical assistance. In 2024, the funding will expand the Global Water Center’s courses in three ways: 1) The delivery of each solar-powered water system course (SPWS 101 and 201) in English and French; 2) The translation of the two existing SPWS courses into Spanish, enabling these courses to reach new global audiences; and 3) The development and design of a SPWS operations and maintenance guide, which will equip operators with the ability to sustainably deliver safe and reliable water.

Additionally, the $149,500 grant will support technical assistance to the Coca-Cola Foundation’s implementing partners who are designing, installing, and operating rural water systems.

Through the partnership of the Coca-Cola Foundation, the Global Water Center will rapidly expand its courses and technical assistance to address water scarcity and energy challenges in regions where people have limited access to safe and reliable water. Ultimately, the funding will be used to help decrease water poverty worldwide.

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