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Water for the World

It's easy to take water for granted when it pours from the tap. But across the globe, thousands of families struggle every day to find clean and safe drinking water. Their lives depend on it — in more ways than one. Because when people have a safe and reliable water source, they can prevent deadly disease, grow more food, raise stronger animals, avoid violent conflict, and spend more time pursuing an education and supporting themselves and their families.

While Mercy Corps is working in the field to improve access to water, you can help here at home. Congressman Earl Blumenauer of Portland Oregon, and Ted Poe of Harris County, Texas have introduced important legislation: the Water for the World Act. This Act will help our government continue to lead the way in getting clean drinking water to the 800 million people around the world who need it, along with adequate sanitation for the 2.5 billion people who lack access.

Tell your Member of Congress to fight for lifesaving access to clean water and sanitation around the world.

Dear Representative,

Millions of children and families suffer from preventable causes that are often caused by lack of access to clean water and sanitation. I am writing to ask you to co-sponsor the Senator Paul Simon Water for the World Act, sponsored by Congressmen Blumenauer and Poe, and will help communities around the world improve their health and well-being.

Specifically, the Water for the World Act will improve the impact and efficiency of U.S. foreign assistance by leveraging non-federal partnerships and funds, increasing the effectiveness and transparency of existing funding, institutionalizing existing U.S. government leadership and directing limited funding to high-priority countries. The act also will help solidify U.S. leadership on water and sanitation, as shown by USAID in its new water and development strategy.

As you know, water has an impact on economic productivity, health, and national security. The U.S.'s 2012 National Intelligence Community Assessment on global water security warns that in the coming years water problems will contribute to instability in countries important to U.S. security interests. Investments in water diplomacy can help prevent water conflict and protect U.S. citizens by showing U.S. commitment to healthy and secure communities around the world. Poor water quality and inadequate sanitation affect billions of people a year and causes the death one child every twenty seconds. Clean water and adequate sanitation not only saves lives and reduces infant mortality, but can also help cash strapped families earn more by boosting economic productivity at the community and national levels. The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that every US$1 invested in clean water, hygiene, and sanitation gives an economic return of between US$3 and US$34, depending on the region.

I respectfully request that you co-sponsor the Water for the World Act (HR 2901). Thank you in advance for your support.