WaterCan Marks World Water Day (March 22) by Launching "End Poverty at the Source!" Video Contest to Highlight Global Water and Sanitation Crisis



    OTTAWA, March 18 /CNW Telbec/ - In honour of World Water Day (March 22,
2008), WaterCan is launching a Canada-wide online video contest called "End
Poverty at the Source!". The contest is intended to get Canadians talking
about a global crisis - the desperate need for clean water and sanitation in
the developing world.
    1.1 billion people worldwide lack access to clean drinking water, and
2.6 billion people lack access to basic sanitation like toilets or safe
latrines. The result is a devastating cycle of poverty and disease that claims
the lives of 5,000 children each day and hampers poverty-fighting efforts
around the globe.
    "When it comes to these basic needs, we are all the same," said
Sophie Grégoire-Trudeau, a correspondent for CTV's eTalk and member of the
contest judging panel, which also includes MuchMusic VJ Sarah Taylor, UNICEF
Water & Sanitation Chief Clarissa Brocklehurst, and other notable Canadians.
    "I've seen what happens when people gain access to clean drinking water
and basic sanitation, and the results are incredible. Every aspect of their
lives improves for the better," added Ms. Grégoire-Trudeau, who visited
Ethiopia with WaterCan in 2006, along with her mother-in-law and WaterCan's
Honourary President, Margaret Trudeau.
    The "End Poverty at the Source!" video contest encourages Canadians ages
18 and up to create 30- to 60-second videos about this global crisis, with the
winner receiving a trip to Africa with WaterCan to see its water and
sanitation programs in action. The deadline for entries is October 19, 2008
and the winner will be announced on November 19, 2008 (World Toilet Day).

    Facts About the Global Water and Sanitation Crisis:
    ---------------------------------------------------

    
    - At any one time, half the world's hospital beds are filled with
      patients suffering from water and sanitation-related diseases (UN)
    - One flush of an average toilet in Canada uses more water than many
      people in Africa have for an entire day
    - Experts believe that we will not defeat AIDS, tuberculosis, malaria, or
      any of the other diseases that plague the developing world until the
      global water and sanitation crisis is addressed (UN)
    

    For complete contest info, judge bios, factsheets, photos, videos, and
more, visit <a href="http://www.watercan.com/videocontest">www.watercan.com/videocontest</a>.

    WaterCan is a Canadian charity dedicated to ending poverty by helping the
world's poorest people gain access to clean water, basic sanitation and
hygiene education.




For further information:

For further information: and interview requests: Erinn Steringa,
WaterCan, (613) 230-5182, ext. 228, (613) 889-9865 (mobile),
esteringa@watercan.com

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