Community Water Solutions implemented our first water business in June 2008 in the village of Kasaligu in the Northern Region of Ghana.

7 months later, in January of 2009, we opened our second water business in Nyamaliga.

9 months later, in October 2009 we opened our third water business Jargiu.

After a successful holiday season of fundraising and with the help of our 2010 Summer Fellows, we opened four new water businesses during the first half of 2010, in Cheko, Gbong, Gidanturu, and Wambong.

We’ve spent the past two and half years slowly expanding, learning new things from each village, and slightly modifying our approach based on these lessons. We’ve learned a lot about fundraising, about building a non-profit, and about harnessing the enthusiasm and knowledge of willing volunteers.

We still have a lot to learn.

But, we now have the experience and resources to finally start scaling-up, and we’re planning to do it quickly! There are about 900,000 people in the Northern Region of Ghana (and 884 million around the world!) without clean drinking water, and we’re really excited to start making a significant dent in that number!

This November (as in right now!) CWS is implementing three new water businesses in the villages of Kampong, Galizengu, and Nyanguripe. By the end of December, we will be in two more.  By February 2011, with the help of the 2011 Winter Fellows we will be in a total of 19 villages in Northern Region Ghana. In just three months, we are going to more than double to the amount of people we serve and we have no plans of slowing down!

Of course, the scale-up of CWS would not have been possible without your support. I would like to send out a big


to everyone who has supported CWS over the past two years. We would especially like to thank the Public Service Center and the Legatum Center at MIT for funding our first two pilot villages, as well as our awesome village sponsors: Volunteer Shredding (Jarigu), iContact (Gbong), an anonymous friend (Cheko), Colleen and Jeff Clopeck (Gidanturu), The Medfield FitGirls (Kampong), Gerry and Judy O’Connell (Gilanzegu), The Nolans (Nyanguripe), The Reids (one of the villages for December), and the CWS Facebook Causes Team (the second village in December). Finally, I would also like to thank Jay Roche whose generous donation helped us to purchase the CWS Truck (without which, this scale-up would not be possible.) THANK YOU ALL!

Here are some pictures from our work over the past week in Kampong and Galinzegu. I have taken A LOT more, but the internet has been slow and sporadic, so these will have to do for now! I’ll keep trying to put more up on this blog as soon as possible!

A cow, standing in and drinking water from the Kampong dugout - the only source of drinking water in this village.
Peter and Shak building the water treatment center in Kampong
Little boys in Galinzegu who helped us build the polyank stand
Amina and Samata, the two women in Gilanzegu who will be running at the CWS water business. They are awesome! (and LOVE getting their picture taken!)
Finishing up the polytank stand in Gilanzegu.
A garaou of dugout water in Gilanzegu. This is the water that people in the village are currently drinking.