Give Water and Health to Families

Help Serve 246 People

Get This Project Started

$1,100 Raised of $16,000

4 supporters, 7% sponsored

“My children cannot go to school when they get stomach aches and high fever from the water.” - Sambath

Svay Leu region, Cambodia

GPS: 13.553, 104.245
See Similar Water Projects
  • Story
  • Svay Leu, Cambodia
  • FAQ's

Your gift provides a safe water source, health training, and hope to families like Sambath’s living in Svay Leu.

Sambath’s Life in Svay Leu, Cambodia

June 2022

59 percent of Svay Leu’s population says that diarrhea is a common illness. This is especially problematic for young children whose immune systems are not fully developed. 

Sambath is a 37-year-old mother of five children living in Svay Leu. Two of her children are currently enrolled in school, but the others had to drop out due to their living conditions. 

Sambath, her husband, and their 15-year-old son take odd jobs to support the family, working on agricultural plantations and growing crops like cassava and rice. The couple often brings their small children to work in the fields with them, as there is no one available to watch the children.

These small jobs do not provide the family with enough money to support themselves, so they live in a temporary shelter on land from a generous neighbor. Oftentimes, their hard earned money has to be spent on health center bills when the children become sick from drinking the contaminated water they get from a nearby pond.

In addition, when the children are sick, they cannot attend school. Sambath hopes for her children to have a bright future, and she wants them to be able to read and write, skills she and her husband never had the luxury of learning. In order to do this, they must stay in school, but that is only possible if they have safe water.

When you give safe water, you give to families like Sambath’s in Svay Leu, Cambodia. You enable families to be healthy and you enable children to stay in school, making brighter futures for themselves.

 

About the Region

Svay Leu, Cambodia

In the northern low, flat plains of Cambodia sits the region of Svay Leu. Svay Leu is home to an estimated 46,000 people. 

71 percent of the population Lifewater serves believes that water scarcity is one of the region’s greatest problems.

A large portion of the population in Svay Leu lives in wood houses, built on large stilts to help protect the homes during the monsoon season. 96 percent of the population relies on agriculture and crop cultivation for their main source of income. Nearly three quarters of the population has less than a primary school education. 

Concerningly, 56 percent of children under five years old had diarrhea during the seven days prior to the most recent 2021 survey. Diarrhea is a global leading cause of death in children under the age of five years old, and it’s primarily caused by unsafe water and poor sanitation.

The good news is, this is entirely preventable. Lifewater’s work shows that waterborne illness can be nearly eliminated with basic access to things like safe drinking water, proper sanitation, and washing hands with soap.

Children and families in Svay Leu need your help. Give to Svay Leu today.

Am I sponsoring a specific village?

No. Your gift will help provide safe drinking water and improved sanitation and hygiene for the Svay Leu region rather than one specific village, making it possible for Lifewater to reach families like this as well as their neighbors.

Will I receive updates?

Yes! You can expect regular updates on progress in Svay Leu. Lifewater is just beginning a “church first” approach, and we’ll update you as milestones and stories of transformation arrive.

Can I visit programs and/or my sponsored water project?

Lifewater has local staff that live and serve among the communities and schools where Lifewater works. Our staff know the language and the culture and are best equipped to serve communities. Because we seek to ensure sustainable water projects and community buy in, we do not allow donors to visit the projects they sponsor. However, we do commit to sending real-time updates, photos, and stories from the projects themselves.

Where does Lifewater work?

With more than 45 years’ experience, LIfewater is the longest-running Christian clean water charity in North America. Over those 45 years, Lifewater has worked in more than 45 different countries. Currently, our work is focused in Sub-Saharan Africa (Ethiopia, Uganda, and Tanzania) and Southeast Asia (Cambodia).

Why these countries and regions?

Lifewater identifies countries and regions that are unreached and underserved with basic water access and sanitation, which means we focus on areas where other organizations are not serving.

Although great strides have been made in the past 20 years to solve the global water crisis, remote and rural populations still remain unreached with adequate water and sanitation. These distant regions are difficult and often costly for governments and NGOs to serve well. Many of these communities feel as though they have been forgotten.

Can I request a water project in a specific country?

Currently, Lifewater has programs in Ethiopia, Uganda, Tanzania, and Cambodia. You can go to lifewater.org/projects to select a specific water project to help. Because our programs are regionalized and made in partnership with the local governments, we are not able to take requests for specific water projects outside of our existing programs.

What percent of funds go towards programs?

Lifewater budgets 80% of expenditures for programs. The remaining 20% is split between administrative/management and fundraising expenses. This ratio is best in class for nonprofits and is why Lifewater has received the highest rating from Charity Navigator.

Administrative/management expenses are used to ensure that we are effective in managing the funds entrusted to us and include the following types of expenses: accounting personnel, leadership time, professional development of staff, external auditors, legal counsel, government registration expenses in every U.S. state, credit card fees for processing donations, bank fees, database maintenance, and office expenses.

Fundraising expenses generate the income needed to do the work that we set out to do. These include the cost of direct mail appeals and communication, marketing projects, donor relations personnel, and email communication systems. Last year, every dollar invested into Lifewater fundraising efforts resulted in $10 of donation for the organization.

Is Lifewater approved/vetted by 3rd party organizations?

Over our 45 year history, Lifewater has received the highest accreditations from the most respected rating organization in the industry. Lifewater is recognized as one of the top-rated charities in the United States by independent reporting organizations, including:

Charity Navigator (four stars)
Evangelical Council for Financial Accountability (ECFA)
Guidestar (Platinum)
Great Nonprofits (five star)
Excellence in Giving
Learn more at https://lifewater.org/top-rated-charity.

How does Lifewater integrate faith into its work?

Lifewater’s work is founded on the belief that every person is made in the image of God. It is with this conviction that we seek out the globe’s most unreached, marginalized people groups in need of safe water.

Both nationally and internationally, 100 percent of our staff are Christians. These Christian staff help facilitate Lifewater’s Healthy Church strategy in communities. And, where there are no churches, we work with church planting partners to start new churches.

To create Healthy Churches, Lifewater first trains church leaders in foundational theology. These leaders are equipped with the basic story of the Christian faith and the biblical mandate to love others. Leaders learn that stopping the spread of disease and caring for the vulnerable aligns with our responsibility as Christians to love our neighbor.

Second, Lifewater ensures churches have safe bathrooms on their premises, handwashing stations, clean water nearby, and the education to promote health within their congregations. It’s imperative that churches are early adopters of healthy hygiene practices.

Third, Lifewater encourages churches to help vulnerable households become Healthy Homes. Church leaders undergo a training to become WASH (water access, sanitation, and hygiene) advocates in their communities. These advocates are encouraged to identify widows, child-headed households, the elderly, and the disabled to help them meet the health standards of Lifewater’s programs.

What is Lifewater’s process? What does the organization do, and how does it do it?

Lifewater’s Vision of a Healthy Village strategy is a relationship-first method. This model transforms entire regions house by house, village by village, and school by school. It is among the most intensive household-level work happening in the entire developing world and is closely tracked for progress, sustainability, and overall impact.

We construct custom-engineered safe water sources and teach life-saving health and sanitation practices in local villages and schools in need.

Story

Your gift provides a safe water source, health training, and hope to families like Sambath’s living in Svay Leu.

Sambath’s Life in Svay Leu, Cambodia

June 2022

59 percent of Svay Leu’s population says that diarrhea is a common illness. This is especially problematic for young children whose immune systems are not fully developed. 

Sambath is a 37-year-old mother of five children living in Svay Leu. Two of her children are currently enrolled in school, but the others had to drop out due to their living conditions. 

Sambath, her husband, and their 15-year-old son take odd jobs to support the family, working on agricultural plantations and growing crops like cassava and rice. The couple often brings their small children to work in the fields with them, as there is no one available to watch the children.

These small jobs do not provide the family with enough money to support themselves, so they live in a temporary shelter on land from a generous neighbor. Oftentimes, their hard earned money has to be spent on health center bills when the children become sick from drinking the contaminated water they get from a nearby pond.

In addition, when the children are sick, they cannot attend school. Sambath hopes for her children to have a bright future, and she wants them to be able to read and write, skills she and her husband never had the luxury of learning. In order to do this, they must stay in school, but that is only possible if they have safe water.

When you give safe water, you give to families like Sambath’s in Svay Leu, Cambodia. You enable families to be healthy and you enable children to stay in school, making brighter futures for themselves.

Svay Leu, Cambodia

 

About the Region

Svay Leu, Cambodia

In the northern low, flat plains of Cambodia sits the region of Svay Leu. Svay Leu is home to an estimated 46,000 people. 

71 percent of the population Lifewater serves believes that water scarcity is one of the region’s greatest problems.

A large portion of the population in Svay Leu lives in wood houses, built on large stilts to help protect the homes during the monsoon season. 96 percent of the population relies on agriculture and crop cultivation for their main source of income. Nearly three quarters of the population has less than a primary school education. 

Concerningly, 56 percent of children under five years old had diarrhea during the seven days prior to the most recent 2021 survey. Diarrhea is a global leading cause of death in children under the age of five years old, and it’s primarily caused by unsafe water and poor sanitation.

The good news is, this is entirely preventable. Lifewater’s work shows that waterborne illness can be nearly eliminated with basic access to things like safe drinking water, proper sanitation, and washing hands with soap.

Children and families in Svay Leu need your help. Give to Svay Leu today.

FAQ's

Am I sponsoring a specific village?

No. Your gift will help provide safe drinking water and improved sanitation and hygiene for the Svay Leu region rather than one specific village, making it possible for Lifewater to reach families like this as well as their neighbors.

Will I receive updates?

Yes! You can expect regular updates on progress in Svay Leu. Lifewater is just beginning a “church first” approach, and we’ll update you as milestones and stories of transformation arrive.

Can I visit programs and/or my sponsored water project?

Lifewater has local staff that live and serve among the communities and schools where Lifewater works. Our staff know the language and the culture and are best equipped to serve communities. Because we seek to ensure sustainable water projects and community buy in, we do not allow donors to visit the projects they sponsor. However, we do commit to sending real-time updates, photos, and stories from the projects themselves.

Where does Lifewater work?

With more than 45 years’ experience, LIfewater is the longest-running Christian clean water charity in North America. Over those 45 years, Lifewater has worked in more than 45 different countries. Currently, our work is focused in Sub-Saharan Africa (Ethiopia, Uganda, and Tanzania) and Southeast Asia (Cambodia).

Why these countries and regions?

Lifewater identifies countries and regions that are unreached and underserved with basic water access and sanitation, which means we focus on areas where other organizations are not serving.

Although great strides have been made in the past 20 years to solve the global water crisis, remote and rural populations still remain unreached with adequate water and sanitation. These distant regions are difficult and often costly for governments and NGOs to serve well. Many of these communities feel as though they have been forgotten.

Can I request a water project in a specific country?

Currently, Lifewater has programs in Ethiopia, Uganda, Tanzania, and Cambodia. You can go to lifewater.org/projects to select a specific water project to help. Because our programs are regionalized and made in partnership with the local governments, we are not able to take requests for specific water projects outside of our existing programs.

What percent of funds go towards programs?

Lifewater budgets 80% of expenditures for programs. The remaining 20% is split between administrative/management and fundraising expenses. This ratio is best in class for nonprofits and is why Lifewater has received the highest rating from Charity Navigator.

Administrative/management expenses are used to ensure that we are effective in managing the funds entrusted to us and include the following types of expenses: accounting personnel, leadership time, professional development of staff, external auditors, legal counsel, government registration expenses in every U.S. state, credit card fees for processing donations, bank fees, database maintenance, and office expenses.

Fundraising expenses generate the income needed to do the work that we set out to do. These include the cost of direct mail appeals and communication, marketing projects, donor relations personnel, and email communication systems. Last year, every dollar invested into Lifewater fundraising efforts resulted in $10 of donation for the organization.

Is Lifewater approved/vetted by 3rd party organizations?

Over our 45 year history, Lifewater has received the highest accreditations from the most respected rating organization in the industry. Lifewater is recognized as one of the top-rated charities in the United States by independent reporting organizations, including:

Charity Navigator (four stars)
Evangelical Council for Financial Accountability (ECFA)
Guidestar (Platinum)
Great Nonprofits (five star)
Excellence in Giving
Learn more at https://lifewater.org/top-rated-charity.

How does Lifewater integrate faith into its work?

Lifewater’s work is founded on the belief that every person is made in the image of God. It is with this conviction that we seek out the globe’s most unreached, marginalized people groups in need of safe water.

Both nationally and internationally, 100 percent of our staff are Christians. These Christian staff help facilitate Lifewater’s Healthy Church strategy in communities. And, where there are no churches, we work with church planting partners to start new churches.

To create Healthy Churches, Lifewater first trains church leaders in foundational theology. These leaders are equipped with the basic story of the Christian faith and the biblical mandate to love others. Leaders learn that stopping the spread of disease and caring for the vulnerable aligns with our responsibility as Christians to love our neighbor.

Second, Lifewater ensures churches have safe bathrooms on their premises, handwashing stations, clean water nearby, and the education to promote health within their congregations. It’s imperative that churches are early adopters of healthy hygiene practices.

Third, Lifewater encourages churches to help vulnerable households become Healthy Homes. Church leaders undergo a training to become WASH (water access, sanitation, and hygiene) advocates in their communities. These advocates are encouraged to identify widows, child-headed households, the elderly, and the disabled to help them meet the health standards of Lifewater’s programs.

What is Lifewater’s process? What does the organization do, and how does it do it?

Lifewater’s Vision of a Healthy Village strategy is a relationship-first method. This model transforms entire regions house by house, village by village, and school by school. It is among the most intensive household-level work happening in the entire developing world and is closely tracked for progress, sustainability, and overall impact.

We construct custom-engineered safe water sources and teach life-saving health and sanitation practices in local villages and schools in need.

Your gift reflects your trust in Lifewater International. We commit to honor your generosity by using your gift to help further the mission and vision of Lifewater International. Your donation is used by Lifewater International according to the project objectives to provide safe drinking water and improved sanitation and hygiene within the specified program area. Lifewater International is a charitable organization as described in 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, registered in the United States. All donations are tax deductible to the full extent allowed by law.

Donations are non-refundable. Lifewater International will honor a donor’s request for any pre-approved program or project whenever possible. In rare occasions where this is not possible, gifts will be used where needed, in accordance with the organization’s charitable purpose. In accordance with this policy, donor’s explicitly release Lifewater International from further restriction on such funds.