For many years, we have demonstrated our commitment to water issues primarily through our own operations, focusing on water efficiency, effluent quality and water reuse. But we also are committed to moving beyond our own fence line to address water issues within our communities of operation. We are working with stakeholders to better understand issues around water accessibility and sanitation, especially in water-stressed communities.
We are committed to mobilizing opportunities for communities in the developing world through clean water. We’re investing in community water stewardship projects around the world, especially in areas where access to potable water is limited.
Projects vary by location. In Cambodia, Ford and our long-time partner, RM Asia, provided $70,000 to construct dozens of community water wells in villages where residents lack access to clean, potable water. The new wells, which are expected to be completed by the end of 2013, will also provide residents with sufficient water supplies to irrigate their fields. Ford India recently helped to refurbish two schools in villages near our plant in Maraimalai Nagar, a suburb of the southern city of Chennai. The refurbishment included new sanitation facilities and drinking water fountains.
Our Ford Motor Company Volunteer Corps, meanwhile, is placing a priority on water-based community projects during our Global Week of Caring and Accelerated Action Days. In 2012, the Ford Fund supported 19 water-related projects in China, Indonesia, Thailand, the Philippines, India, Germany and South Africa. In arid southwest China, 60 Ford employees from Nanjing teamed up with The Amity Foundation to help eight families build individual water cellars to capture water in the rainy season. In Indonesia, Ford employees helped install a machine that processes salt water into clean, potable water for 5,000 area residents. In the Philippines, Ford volunteers helped construct water collection stations for 250 villagers.
(See the Communities section for more on Ford’s volunteer programs.)