Water Well Journal

January 2017

Water Well Journal

Issue link: https://read.dmtmag.com/i/767379

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Page 7 of 63

Editor's NOTE W hen I lined up for the start of the Running Water 5K & 10K Challenge in the shadows of Ohio Stadium on a Sunday morning at The Ohio State University, I slightly resembled the thousands of students that call the school home. I'm certainly not trying to pass myself off for looking like a freshman, but I was sporting a backpack. Mine, though, was not full of books, pens, and a calculator. It was a special pack filled with a gallon of water. The extra weight of the water—about eight pounds— didn't impact me too much as I navigated the course between class- room buildings and trees on the beautiful campus in Columbus, Ohio. A talk at the starting line, though, stayed with me the entire journey. Connie Cheren, the founder of Partners for Care, pointed out the backpack, a prod- uct called PackH2O, is helping people around the world tasked with walking long distances every day to get water and bring it back to their homes and villages. It is a lightweight, ergonomic pack that stores water poured into the top, features a liner that can be sanitized in sunlight, and has a tap on the bottom for pouring. Simply put, I was toting a life-saver. The packs hold 20 liters of water, which is about 5.2 gallons and more than 40 pounds—meaning I got off easy carrying one gallon on my jaunt. One full pack can provide enough water for a family of five or a classroom of children for one day. The best feature, though, is the pack is designed for exactly what it does—being a clean vessel for carrying water. It's not an old gasoline container or a dirty pot used previously for farming. Those are often what end up getting carried by people in water-starved areas and they contaminate the very water they hold. Cheren held up a gasoline container filled with water at the start line. It was hard to fathom wanting to drink its contents. Just seeing her hold it drove home the point PackH2O shares on its website: Water-related diseases are responsible for 80% of all illnesses and deaths in the developing world. It is estimated there are as many as 700 million people needing to walk a long distance for their water on a daily basis. That is more than twice the total number of people who live in the United States. Numbers like that are staggering. They make me thrilled I went a mere 6.4 miles on one day in an event raising funds to buy backpacks. In fact, the event raised enough money to buy 270 packs. Cheren told us they will go to Kenya where they will impact more than 3000 water-needy people. I can't help but smile when I think of someone in Kenya carrying the backpack I toted on my walk. Thad Plumley is the editor of WWJ and director of information products at the National Ground Water Association. He can be reached at tplumley@ngwa.org and on Twitter @WaterWellJournl. SAVING LIVES ONE BACKPACK AT A TIME Advancing the expertise of groundwater professionals and furthering groundwater awareness. Chief Executive Officer Kevin McCray, CAE kmccray@ngwa.org NGWA President Todd Hunter, CWD/PI Director of Information Products/Editor Thad Plumley tplumley@ngwa.org Water Well Journal Editorial Review Board Art Becker, MGWC, CPG; Tom Christopherson; Dan Milan; Roger Renner, MGWC; John Schnieders, Ph.D., and Robert Sterrett, Ph.D. Senior Editor Mike Price mprice@ngwa.org Copy Editor Wayne Beatty wbeatty@ngwa.org Production and Design Janelle McClary jmcclary@ngwa.org Advertising Brooke Smith Kelli Nilsson Matthew Thomasson To inquire, contact sales@ngwa.org Circulation Coordinator Mark Jones mjones@ngwa.org Contributing Writers Mike Allen; Ed Butts, PE, CPI; Donald W. Gregory; William J. Lynott; Julie Hansen; Al Rickard, CAE; Michael J. Schnieders, PG, PH-GW; Gary Shawver, MGWC; Ron Slee; Lana Straub; Raymond L. Straub Jr., PG; Jennifer Strawn; and Alexandra Walsh Editorial, Advertising, & Publishing Offices 601 Dempsey Rd., Westerville, OH 43081 (800) 551-7379 Fax: (614) 898-7786 Selected content from Water Well Journal is indexed on Ground Water On-Line™ at www.NGWA.org/gwonline © Copyright 2017 by the National Ground Water Association. All rights reserved. The Groundwater NGWA Association For more information on PackH2O, go to www.packh2o.com. The Water Well Journal (ISSN #0043-1443) is published monthly by the National Ground Water Association, 601 Dempsey Rd., Westerville, OH 43081. Printed and mailed at Beaver Dam, Wisconsin, and additional mailing offices. Postal acceptance: Periodical (requester subscription circulation) postage paid at Westerville, Ohio, and at additional mailing offices. Postmaster: Send address changes to Water Well Journal, 601 Dempsey Rd., Westerville, OH 43081. Canada Post/ Publications Mail Agreement #40739533. Return address: 4960-2 Walker Rd., Windsor, ON N9A 6J3. waterwelljournal.com 6 January 2017 WWJ

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