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Off the beaten track

Just a Drop: Helpers bring aid to 'lost' villages

Hayes and Jarvis Blog Team October 30, 2013

Just a Drop’s engineering and medical volunteers have fought their way through floods, overcome dangerous, swamp-ridden terrain, and resorted to all manners of transport from horseback to boat and light plane; all to bring clean water and sanitation to communities living in some of the most remote places on the planet.

"The work of the water-aid charity this year could never have happened without the support, goodwill and funding by the international travel and tourism industry", said Fiona Jeffery, chairman and founder of Just a Drop.

In July, for example, with support from Hayes and Jarvis, part of the TUI Travel group, a party set out for two villages at Lake Roja Aguada, Bolivia, where children are becoming ill and dying due to the effects of dirty water. Four wells are being installed there by the charity.

The party was led by Col. John Blashford-Snell, Just a Drop's president. He said: "Extensive flooding caused by the recent 'surazo' that swept in from Patagonia blocked all movement by vehicles north of Santa Ana and the expedition and most of the equipment and stores had to fly in light planes to Coquinal.

"A horse mounted medical team led by British Army dentist, Major Alex Jess set out separately with their stores carried in a wooden wheeled cart, pulled by four bullocks!"

Fiona Jeffery added that the charity is becoming known for its work in areas many other organisations are unable to reach.

"Eight projects have been funded so far this year by Just a Drop, with three projects for Zambia, two projects in Tanzania as well as activity in Ecuador, Afghanistan and, of course Bolivia," she said. “All have installed boreholes, pipelines, toilets, or latrines for children and their families desperate for our help."

Hayes and Jarvis Director, Clare Tobin commented: "The sustainable supply of water underpins economic growth, food and energy security. The most effective way to meet the needs of future generations is to educate them about water. Water is the next carbon. We must focus on the scarcity of water in the same way as we are focusing on our carbon footprint. In my view global economic pressures and climate change will mean that before long we will all need to measure our water footprint".

Jeffery said there were still many projects that the Trustees reluctantly had to turn down due to lack of funding. She is hopeful that World Travel Market in November at ExCeL London is successful in raising further funds by exhibitors and visitors.

2009 Projects

In addition to Bolivia, Just a Drop has also helped:

Zambia Western Province - four village boreholes;
Tanzania Ughandi - two hand pumps installed at new boreholes;
Tanzania Ughandi Mhuvi School - construction of 20 pit latrines sponsored by The Doras Trust;
Ecuador, Chikianenentza and Sinangoe Villages - provision of clean water supply;
Zambia Kalonda School - ten new toilets and restoration of ten existing toilets;
Afghanistan Safed Chihr - provision of water and waste disposal system, in partnership with Afghanistan Mother and Child Rescue, sponsored by the Guild of Travel and Tourism;
Zambia, Bowood Community School - water and sanitation project.

In 11 years, Just a Drop has helped more than a million people in 28 countries.

Hayes and Jarvis Plots a Journey to a Better Future Worldwide with Just A Drop Campaign

Building on its long-standing relationship with the clean water charity Just a Drop , Hayes and Jarvis has announced a new project-based support campaign which aims to deliver water to those who need it most, in places around the world hit hard by the dual impact of climate change and the global recession.

As well as making a substantial donation itself, Hayes and Jarvis is focusing the campaign on a series of regular fund-raising days and activities led by its staff, with the money raised being matched by the company.

Championed by Clare Tobin, Managing Director of TUI Travel's UK Specialist long haul brands (which include Hayes and Jarvis), the first project to be supported is the creation of a water system with two new wells and hand pumps in a remote area of northern Bolivia, regularly blighted by severe disease-spreading floods.

The Just a Drop project will help 260 people living in the village of Nueva Esperanza (New Hope), which lies in the tropical fresh water lake area of Rojoaguado. Nearly half of them are children, who are likely to be the main victims of a lack of access to clean water due to their vulnerability to water-borne diseases such as dysentery and cholera .

The Bolivian project is the first of several that Hayes and Jarvis plans to support over the coming year, with the central aim of helping provide the clean water that will offer children living in remote communities a better chance of a healthy future.

Stressing that the cornerstones of the campaign are water, children, and education, Clare Tobin said: "Teaching children about water sanitation and hygiene can quite literally save their lives. The sustainable supply of water underpins economic growth, poverty reduction, food, and energy security."

“The most effective way to meet the needs of future generations is to educate them about water. We must focus on the scarcity of water in the same way as we are focusing on carbon – water is the next carbon. It is my view that before long we will all need to measure our 'water footprint'.”

"Having just launched our first programme to Latin America, our interest in the region has been heightened and we chose to support the Bolivian project first because this is a way to offer a real economic benefit to a local community that urgently needs help. The dual consequence of the global recession and climate change negatively impacting on weather patterns will make access to clean water and the economic situation there even more difficult – making it crucially important for us to act responsibly and help."

Launching the campaign, the first fund-raising day was held on 29th July at Hayes and Jarvis’ headquarters in The Atrium, Crawley. A total of £913 was raised through staff donations and a raffle for an all inclusive beach holiday in Costa Rica, one of the new Latin America destinations just added by Hayes and Jarvis to its Worldwide Collection.

Just a Drop is a charity that raises money to build wells, install hand pumps, and carry out health and sanitation programmes to give people clean, accessible water. Find out more at