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Santa Clarita Valley Rotary Club and Water Missions International Help Prepare Cook Islands for Next Disaster


Charleston, SC, July 11, 2006 --(PR.com)-- The Santa Clarita Valley Rotary Club of Santa Clarita, California has purchased a Living Water™ Treatment System (LWTS™) from Water Missions International to provide an effective means of purifying contaminated water on the Cook Islands after natural disasters.

Cyclones frequently strike the South Pacific nation with devastating effects, leaving inhabitants without safe water for up to five days until bottled water can be flown in from neighboring islands, such as Tahiti, Fiji, or Samoa. Transportable by pick-up truck, the LWTS™ can be set up within hours to purify up to 10,000 gallons of water per day from nearly any fresh water source. This will be the first LWTS™ sent to the Cook Islands.

"The Cook Islands are in a region plagued by events such as earthquakes, floods, tsunamis, and other disasters that put water resources at risk. As we learned from Hurricane Katrina and the South Asian tsunami, advance planning and strong partnerships are vital to effective disaster relief. The Santa Clarita Valley Rotary Club is doing that planning and forming those partnerships that will make a real difference when it counts, after the next disaster when people are without safe water," said Water Missions International President and co-founder Molly Greene.

A team of six from the Santa Clarita club will attend a training session at Water Missions International’s production facility in Charleston, South Carolina on July 10 to learn how to set up and operate the water system. The team will fly to the Cook Islands on August 13 to train members of their partner club, the Rarotonga Rotary Club. Through a joint venture, the Rarotonga club and the Cook Island Government will both be responsible for the LWTS™.

Air New Zealand will donate transportation of the LWTS™ on a space-available basis. Several Santa Clarita area companies and individuals donated funding for the system: Bayless Engineering, Harley Davidson of Lancaster, Community Chevrolet, Wrage Inc., MWS Wire Industries, Mr. and Mrs. Danny Samson, Mr. and Mrs. Kyle McMullen, and Kristina and James Zimmerman. According to Rotarian Michael Berger, "None of these donors are members of Rotary International. They just believe in giving back and helping less fortunate people."

People’s generosity and support of this project extends to South Carolina and Georgia as well. Water Missions International is grateful to Steven Dopp, an active member of the Rotary Club of Charleston, longtime supporter of Water Missions, and co-owner/general manager of the Francis Marion Hotel. Thanks to Mr. Dopp, the Santa Clarita team will be staying at the historic Francis Marion in upgraded rooms at a deeply discounted rate. In addition, Lester Preiss of Dawn Video Productions in Gainesville, Georgia will be donating his services to film the July 10 training session and produce a video that will be used to instruct future LWTS™ recipients and volunteers.

"It’s wonderful that so many people from all over the country are coming together to contribute to the success of this project – and future projects,” said Mrs. Greene. “Everyone involved is contributing what they can to make sure the people of the Cook Islands will have safe water to drink after the next disaster."

Water Missions International has been working with Rotary District 7770 to provide safe water in developing countries since 1999.

About Water Missions International:
Water Missions International (WMI) is a 501 (c)(3) nonprofit Christian engineering organization, providing appropriate, sustainable safe-water solutions in some of the world’s poorest countries. WMI’s mission is to provide sustainable access to safe water and an opportunity to hear the “Living Water” message in developing countries and disaster areas. WMI provides assistance without regard to political or religious association, age, or ethnicity. Since 1998, WMI has made safe water available to more than a million people.

www.watermissions.org

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Contact Information
Water Missions International
Lelani Rowland
843-769-7395
Contact
www.watermissions.org

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