In Pakistan, one of the most water-stressed countries on earth, safe drinking water still remains a distant dream.
Polluted drinking water has a direct impact on children’s health outcomes, including alarming stunting rates. As reported by UNICEF, approximately 53,000 children under the age of five die of diarrhoea caused by low water quality. The alarmingly high number of contaminated drinking water sources highlights the urgent need for testing and verifying of all drinking water sources, followed by effective mitigation measures.
Many societies have compromised water supplies that have contaminated water sources; Pak Colony in Karachi is one such example of an area that has limited access to clean water.
In a bid to provide clean water to the masses, the global beverage and snack conglomerate PepsiCo, in collaboration with WaterAid, is working to improve access to clean water for underserved urban communities in Pakistan. The underlying aim of this partnership is to provide communities, healthcare facilities, and schools with sustainable access to fresh water.
Together with Water Aid, PepsiCo Pakistan has installed a water filtration plant at Pak Colony. The water facility can filter 50,000 litres of water every day and provides safe drinking water to 100,000 residents in the area, including three educational institutions.
PepsiCo CEO Eugene Willemsen inaugurated the water filtration facility on Tuesday. Arif Jabbar, Country Director of WaterAid Pakistan, was also present at the celebration. Eugene Willemsen, CEO PepsiCo Africa, Middle East and South Asia said:
“Taking positive action towards the environment and communities is ingrained in our pep+ mission. Providing safe water access continues to be our priority in Pakistan and globally.”
With PepsiCo Pakistan’s safe water program, clean water has been made available for more than 200,000 people in rural and urban underprivileged areas of Karachi, Lahore and Islamabad. PepsiCo plans to continue expanding this program into rural areas.
The PepsiCo water strategy is designed to support a long-term, sustainable supply of clean, safe water to its business and to local communities that rely on clean, reliable water.
Through partnerships funded by The PepsiCo Foundation, the company’s philanthropic arm, PepsiCo since 2006 has helped more than 55 million people gain access to safe water through distribution, purification, and conservation programs, far surpassing the company’s original target to help 25 million people by 2025.
With an immediate focus on water distribution, sanitation, and hygiene practices, PepsiCo Pakistan has set a new target to provide safe water to 100 million people by 2030. The video below demonstrates the positive impact of the filtration plant on the lives of community members living nearby.