White Bear Lake Rotary Club recently completed fundraising for a Rotary Global Grant.

Global grants provide an opportunity for local Rotary Clubs to raise funds that are then matched by Rotary International. The White Bear Lake club collaborated to raise $35,000 that was matched for a total of $91,400 to support four schools in Nigeria. These schools will receive access to safe drinking water, sanitation and hygiene education (WASH Projects) when the work is completed. 

The WASH projects will significantly impact the lives of students and teachers attending the schools. Safe water reduces illnesses, and access to adequate latrines and hand-washing is essential, particularly for girls who often drop out of school if latrines are not available. The projects will be completed within the next two to three months.

The White Bear Lake Rotary Club, in partnership with H2O for Life, (a youth engagement nonprofit based in White Bear Lake), Procter & Gamble, PIND (Nigerian Implementing partner) and Rotary Clubs from around the state and worldwide worked together to provide the funding. The project was managed by White Bear Lake Rotarians Fred Treiber and Patty Hall.

Gathering the funds and managing all the partnerships was time-consuming, project managers said, but the outcome and impact is well worth the time invested. The schools in Nigeria serve large numbers of students, typically 800 to 1,000 per school. The projects will provide water and sanitation access to more than 4,000 students and teachers.

The White Bear Lake Rotary Club recently received an additional District Grant of $10,200 to provide a water well, storage tanks and filtration systems for two more schools in Nigeria. These grants are a result of a three-year commitment to provide WASH projects for 30 schools in Nigeria. To date, 17 schools have been funded, with another seven in the funding pipeline.

The Rotarians thank all of the participants for making this work possible.

White Bear Lake Rotary meets Wednesday mornings at Rudy's Redeye Grill at 7:30 a.m. Guests interested in learning more are welcome to attend and enjoy a free breakfast. Visit www.whitebearrotary.org.

Submitted by Rotarian Patty Hall

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