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Voss Foundation Helps CHF International Provide Clean Water in Rural Ethiopia

Voss Foundation donated $25,000 to CHF International to increase access to safe water for more than 100,000 rural Ethiopians by building three wells in rural communities

(PRWEB) June 22, 2010 -- Continuing its long-term commitment to Ethiopia and its successful partnership with CHF International (CHF), the Voss Foundation has donated $25,000 to the Silver Spring-MD-based international development organization. With its first donation, the Voss Foundation joins CHF in diversifying livelihoods and increasing access to safe water for more than 100,000 rural Ethiopians by building three wells in rural communities.

“We help these communities to meet their needs through a unique approach which ensures local ownership and long-term sustainability through partnerships with trusted organizations on the ground, like CHF,” says Kara Gerson, executive director of Voss Foundation. “It is critical to use appropriate technology that assesses the multiple water requirements of a community; in large pastoral communities in Ethiopia, this meant shallow wells with hand pumps for drinking water. Thanks to our Give A Drop partnership with Virgin Unite and Project Clean Water, and our Sammen for Vann Norwegian campaign, Voss Foundation is able to join CHF in changing lives with the provision of access to clean water.”

Funded by USAID, CHF began working in Ethiopia in 2004 to help mitigate the impact of extreme drought and floods on rural, agricultural communities and decrease their dependence on food aid. Activities have focused on improving food security by increasing household assets such as livestock, supporting livelihoods through access to economic opportunities, and improving health and hygiene through access to clean water and sanitation.

The work developed together by CHF and Ethiopian communities proved to be in line with Voss Foundation’s vision to provide access to clean drinking water to rural communities in Sub-Saharan Africa. Voss Foundation’s donation will allow CHF to expand its existing program to include three additional villages Gode, Mustahil, and Kelafo, all of which have large pastoral communities, by building three wells. The project is part of CHF’s USAID-funded Sustainable Humanitarian Assistance Program for Ethiopia (SHAPE) program in the Gode zone of the Somali Regional State.

Michel Holsten, CHF Vice President for Business Development, sees these corporate partnerships as vital to CHF’s work in the developing world. “Relationships such as the one we have built with the Voss Foundation are crucial to CHF’s work and guarantee the effectiveness of our programs in the region. The goal of the program is to help drought-affected communities meet their emergency needs for water, food and income while assisting them to build their resources and capacities to respond to future crisis.”

CHF International (CHF) is an international development organization founded in 1952 that works in post-conflict, unstable and developing countries. CHF partners with communities around the world to help them to improve and direct their lives and livelihoods. The organization believes that those best suited to decide what a community needs are the people of the community itself. CHF is a politically neutral, non-profit 501(c)(3) organization. For more information, visit

Voss Foundation is dedicated to providing access to clean drinking water to rural communities in Sub-Saharan Africa. We employ a unique approach that ensures local ownership and long-term sustainability through partnerships with trusted organizations on the ground, use of appropriate technology, and through systems that align environmental consideration with the diverse water needs of a community. Founded by VOSS of Norway ASA as an independent 501(c)(3) public charity, the Voss Foundation has offices in New York and Oslo, and is currently working on projects in Kenya, Mali, Ethiopia, and Democratic Republic of the Congo. For more information, visit


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