Last year, the Groundwater Foundation donated US$100,000 to the Water Well Trust to fund a programme which pays for the initial cost of drilling a well and participating families are given a 20-year one per cent interest loan.
On July 4, 2019, the Saleh family's water stopped flowing due to a broken casing which caused their water well system to be filled with sand. Unable to afford the up-front cost of a new water well, Marvet Saleh was forced into costly short-term solutions to provide her family with water.
"We ended up buying gallons and gallons of water jugs and eventually purchased four large totes and a shallow well pump, all connected with gardening hoses and PVC pipe," said Saleh. "But this is Chicago, and it's getting cold which creates a lot of problems for our system."
After learning about the Water Well Trust grant programme from her local fire department, Saleh began the process of applying for funding assistance to purchase a new water well.
"I'm so thankful for the partnership between the Groundwater Foundation and Water Well Trust because there is nowhere else I could get a loan for a new well, especially not one I can afford for me and my family," said Saleh.
The Groundwater Foundation, working with the Water Well Trust, assisted Saleh throughout the entirety of the project, from soliciting bids from well drillers to the final installation of the system.
"Water is a basic human need and often taken for granted. Living without clean, safe water impacts almost every part of your day-to-day life," said National Ground Water Association CEO and Groundwater Foundation board member, Terry S. Morse CAE, CIC. "I'm thrilled we were able to help Marvet and her family, no family should be without clean, safe, and affordable water. Currently, there are 1.5 million Americans lacking complete plumbing and access to clean, safe, affordable drinking water."