The struggles of folks around the world to obtain something as simple as clean drinking water are both real and also heartbreaking. Convinced that he (along with others in his circle) could do something about this struggle, one Philadelphia-area resident took action.
TJ Foltz, a former Christian minister in the Philadelphia area, decided to create Humankind Water, sourced in the Pocono Mountains of Pennsylvania. The company uses the money it raises to provide resources for getting clean water to struggling areas worldwide.
A simple product can help make a difference to people a world away — Photo courtesy of Humankind Water
In 2012, Foltz entered a contest sponsored by Walmart entitled "Get on the Shelf" that he didn't think they'd win, but did. The contest allowed entrants to pitch their products for a chance to have Walmart carry them in stores and place them on shelves. This is currently where you can find Humankind Water, in Philadelphia area Walmarts.
Profits from sales here, as well as funds from Foltz' associated nonprofit organization, then go to directly to fund community projects in needy areas of the world. These projects help deliver safe drinking water to areas that only have contaminated resources. Money from Humankind assists them in digging wells and putting in piping to help bring water where it's needed.
Why water, and why now? It's estimated that near a billion people on Earth do not have access to safe drinking water. That translates into one person in seven. According to Humankind's website figures, half of the hospital beds in the world are occupied by someone who is either sick or dying from lack of clean water or sanitation.
Those hard facts made it clear that something needed to be done, and that's why Foltz and his team work tirelessly to keep their mission going.
The availability of water can make a world of difference to communities all over the globe — Photo courtesy of Humankind Water
Humankind water is bottled nearby, in the Pocono Mountains of Pennsylvania, which, ironically, has some of the purest spring water around. Stores nearest to this distribution center were able to stock the water first, but the products have since been added to shelves in a huge number of stores in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, New York, Connecticut, Delaware, Maryland and Virginia.
Foltz continues to work to expand the business and to get the word out about his cause.
Efforts like this – from a simple man with a simple idea – prove that anyone can make a difference in the world. TJ Foltz is one such example. His message and his efforts are proof that great ideas and simple persistence can make a difference here at home or in places far, far away.