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Bringing Clean Water to the World with charity: water

February 27th, 2020

Update as of February 28, 2020:  For the second year in a row, we are partnering with charity: water to celebrate World Water Day on Sunday, March 22. During the entire month of March, we’ll be collecting donations at checkout to fund the development of four clean water projects (specifically, community wells with hand pumps) in Ethiopia.


Last year, we reached our original donation goal of $50,000, which was matched by a new partner—Red Nose Day USA—to bring our total donation to charity: water up to $100,000. The funds were used to develop 10 clean water wells in Ethiopia.


Since we launched Thrive Market, we’ve been dedicated to our mission of making healthy living accessible for everyone. While the food we eat and products we use on our bodies and in our homes are our primary focus, we also recognize that lack of access to basic human necessities—like clean, safe drinking water—is causing profound human problems around the globe.

For many of us, our ability to open a tap and fill a glass with clean, drinkable water is something we almost take for granted. But for 785 million people around the world, the reality is dramatically different. Nearly one in 10 people worldwide have limited access to clean water; most live in isolated rural areas and spend hours every day walking to collect water for their families. Primarily women and children are tasked with collecting water, which means that women are unable to earn an income to support their families and children are kept out of school. To make matters worse, the water they spend so much time collecting often carries diseases that can make everyone sick.

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But access to clean water can change everything. That’s the core belief that sparked the mission behind charity: water, our charitable partner for the month of March. Charity: water founder Scott Harrison spent a decade as a New York City nightclub promoter before he found himself feeling spiritually, morally, and emotionally bankrupt. Harrison spent two years on a hospital ship off the coast of Liberia, where he saw the effects of dirty water firsthand. Inspired and transformed by the experience, he returned to New York and started charity: water from his apartment. Now, 13 years later and with the help of more than 1 million supporters worldwide, charity: water has raised more than $450 million and funded over 51,000 water projects in 28 countries. When completed, those projects will provide over 11 million people with clean, safe drinking water.

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We’re proud to partner with charity: water this month and give our members the opportunity to help bring clean water to communities in need. Our goal is to raise $50,000, which will fund five clean water wells in Ethiopia. Access to clean water in Ethiopia reduces water collection time and disease burden, creating transformational change in education, gender equality, and household income.

Ready to get involved?

There are multiple ways you can help! For starters, every time you order during the month of March, you can donate a portion—or all!—of your savings when you check out. Every dollar donated at checkout will go to our projects with charity: water, and just $40 can bring clean water to one more person in need.

If you’re not ready to make a purchase or aren’t yet a Thrive Market member, you can also donate directly to charity: water through our donation page.

Follow along on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter throughout March for regular updates on progress toward our goal of $50,000, as well as more details about the campaign and insights from the charity: water team.

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Here’s a quick download of what we can accomplish together in support of charity: water:

Improving Health

Diseases from dirty water kill more people every year than all forms of violence, including war. Forty-three percent of those deaths are children under five years old. Access to clean water and basic sanitation can save around 16,000 lives every week.

Prioritizing Education

Clean water helps keep kids in school, especially girls, because less time collecting water means more time in class. Clean water and proper toilets at school means teenage girls don’t have to stay home for a week out of every month.

Taking Back Time

In Africa alone, women spend 40 billion hours a year walking for water. Access to clean water gives communities more time to grow food, earn an income, and go to school—all of which combat poverty.

Empowering Women

Women are responsible for 72% of the water collected in Sub-Saharan Africa. When a community gets water, women and girls get their lives back. They start businesses, improve their homes, and take charge of their own futures.

This article is related to: Educational, Thrive Gives

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Holly ThomasHolly is the senior director of content & community at Thrive Market. She started her career as a Washington Post reporter before becoming a fashion editor at Refinery29. These days, she applies her lifestyle journalism chops to the world of healthy food and wellness trends.
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