Safe Water Network was founded in 2006 by the late actor and philanthropist Paul Newman and a group of civic leaders.
Paul Newman, in an interview with “Film Monthly” published in 2002.
Newman was passionate about the welfare of children and the environment. He founded several other charitable initiatives: Chief Executives for Corporate Purpose, Newman’s Own Foundation, and SeriousFun Children’s Network.
Since its founding, Safe Water Network has worked to overcome the challenges faced by communities in developing economies with restricted access to safe water. Preliminary research identified critical gaps in service delivery: unreliable operations, financial unsustainability, poor quality water, and inequitable access. Our innovative original idea was to restore agency to communities through access to safe water, education, and capacity building. We believe deeply in the potential of communities to sustainably manage their own safe water systems.
We chose to begin our field implementation work in Ghana and India because of the enabling environments in both countries, including an openness to foreign investment, stable democracy and civil society, and a common language base. Starting and growing this work was possible through strong in-country teams of experts collaborating with a network of public and private partners. Through Field Implementation, Technical Assistance, and Sector Engagement, Safe Water Network is committed to providing the resources and practices that ensure millions of people in Ghana, India and globally have access to safe water.
Founded by Paul Newman, John Whitehead, and other civic leaders
Launched the first Safe Water Stations in Ghana and India
Installed our first Safe Water Station remote monitoring system
Implemented a community water system in Kibera, Kenya in partnership with Shining Hope for Communities (Shofco)
Conducted a review of the market potential for small water enterprises in Kenya with World Bank group member, the International Finance Corporation
Launched iJal Women’s Empowerment Program in India
Provided policy recommendations on bringing tap water to every home to the national Ministry of Drinking Water & Sanitation in India
Launched Technical Assistance project supporting the state Government of Karnataka in India to improve performance of 18,000 water purification systems for 20 million people
Partnered with USAID on the Sustainable Enterprises for Water and Health (SEWAH) project, bringing together private and public sector actors to address safe water access in urban areas of India
Implemented our first community-wide piped connections program in
Nobewam, Ghana, with more than 90% of families accessing safe water at home