Multi-partner approach intended to foster lasting change
TORONTO, Sept. 7, 2011 /CNW/ - ONE DROP and RBC today announced a new
and innovative initiative, Project India, that will educate and improve
access to safe drinking water and sanitation in Orissa, one of India's
poorest states. Project India will be funded by a $1.1 million grant
provided by RBC. Guy Laliberté, Chair of ONE DROP and Founder of
Cirque du Soleil®, and Gordon M. Nixon, President and CEO of RBC, were
on hand for the announcement made at LA SOIRÉE ONE DROP under the big top of Cirque du Soleil's TOTEM™ at the Toronto
"ONE DROP is acting as an agent of change by joining forces with the RBC
Blue Water Project® and other local organizations to improve the living
conditions and reduce poverty in India. This initiative, based on a
social arts and popular education program, aims to encourage
communities to adopt responsible behaviour and help preserve the vital
resource of water," explained Guy Laliberté, ONE DROP. "This evening,
in Toronto, we have taken another step towards the dream of water for
all - a source of life and a creative development force. I will
continue reaching out to the world to make this dream a reality, one
drop at a time, one step at a time, for future generations."
Project India will partner with local organizations such as Gram Vikas,
a non-governmental organization that has been working with poor and
marginalized rural communities in Orissa since 1979. Gram Vikas will
take the technical lead on the project, working with local residents to
establish community-managed water supply and sanitation facilities. In
addition, ONE DROP will collaborate with local organizations such as
the Bakul Foundation, to create an arts and education program intended
to provide lasting behavioural change with residents and in the
community at large. The RBC Blue Water Project will fully fund the
implementation of the arts and education component of Project India.
"India has some of the world's most water-stressed regions, and on
behalf of all of our clients from India, RBC is proud to be able to
support such a worthy project," said Gord Nixon, RBC. "As a Canadian
organization, we're conscious of how challenging it can be to select
the best overseas projects for funding, especially with an issue as
complex as water. We're confident that the collaboration between ONE
DROP and the reputable and efficient organizations who are already
working on the ground in Orissa can make a real difference."
LA SOIRÉE ONE DROP in Toronto: A show of solidarity
This dazzling benefit event will include a performance of TOTEM™ by
Cirque du Soleil and an exclusive reception. RBC and ONE DROP would
like to thank all the people and businesses who spared no effort to
make LA SOIRÉE a magical event.
This benefit evening in favor of access to water for all, presented by
RBC in aid of ONE DROP, raised $300,000. These funds will be used to
finance ONE DROP Project India as well as raise awareness among people
and communities about water-related issues, both locally and globally.
The funding announced today is part of the RBC Blue Water Project's
10-year, $10 million commitment to ONE DROP for a range of
on-the-ground water projects and awareness programs around the world.
Since becoming the founding corporate partner of ONE DROP in 2007, RBC
has committed $1.5 million for a watershed protection and conservation
project in Honduras, and $1 million to help restore small hydraulic and
sanitation infrastructures in Haiti as well as raise awareness about
the importance of sound water management through an arts program.
About ONE DROP
ONE DROP - an initiative of Guy Laliberté, Founder of Cirque du Soleil - is an international non-governmental organization (NGO) founded on
October 29, 2007 in Montreal, Canada. Water is essential to life.
Access to safe water gives communities the chance to learn, develop and
thrive. That is why ONE DROP works on several fronts to make a real
difference. With its unique arts-based approach, ONE DROP helps to
ensure sustainable development for communities by implementing
educational projects, providing adapted solutions for access to safe
water and granting microfinance loans. Creative projects led by ONE
DROP worldwide seek to raise the population's awareness of
water-related issues and to encourage the adoption of responsible water
management practices. To learn more, visit ONEDROP.org.
About RBC and the RBC Blue Water Project
The RBC Blue Water Project is a 10-year, $50 million philanthropic
commitment to supporting organizations that protect watersheds and
ensure access to clean drinking water in Canada and abroad. Since 2007,
RBC has committed more than $28 million in single and multi-year grants
to over 400 organizations.
Royal Bank of Canada (RY on TSX and NYSE) and its subsidiaries operate
under the master brand name RBC. We are Canada's largest bank as
measured by assets and market capitalization, and among the largest
banks in the world, based on market capitalization. We are one of North
America's leading diversified financial services companies, and provide
personal and commercial banking, wealth management services, insurance,
corporate and investment banking and transaction processing services on
a global basis. We employ approximately 74,000 full- and part-time
employees who serve close to 15 million personal, business, public
sector and institutional clients through offices in Canada, the U.S.
and 55 other countries. For more information, please visit rbc.com.
For further information:
| Katherine Adams |
Office: 1-514-723-7646 ext. 7029
| || || || Jackie Braden |
Senior Manager, Brand Communications, RBC