A whole new definition for running water

Lee Edwards Helen Cheeseman and Ivan Jepson


For once Northumbrian Water is keen to leave the taps running.

Running the Great North Run, that is.

A team of the region’s respected business colleagues plan to don giant 6ft tap costumes when they tackle the famous run. Rather than wasting precious water, these running taps will be raising awareness of the importance of clean drinking water and safe sanitation championed by the work of the international charity WaterAid.

Ivan Jepson (43) from Hexham and Lee Edwards (39) from Newton Aycliffe, both from Northumbrian Water, will be dressed as the giant taps and Helen Cheeseman (32) from North Shields, from the Environment Agency, will be running with a bucket strapped to her head to represent the work women carry out in communities to fetch water for their families.

Ivan said: “I know I’m not blessed with a “Mo Farrah physique” so this is going to be quite a challenge for me but my business colleagues have dragged me out of my self-imposed athletics retirement and it’s for a really worthwhile cause.”

Helen and Lee spent ten days in Zambia earlier this year visiting villages that do not have access to safe water and toilets. They saw how the money raised by WaterAid is spent to transform peoples’ lives by giving them those basic human rights.

Almost 2,000 children die every day from diseases caused by dirty water and poor sanitation and one in ten people across the world still do not have access to clean water.

Helen added: “These very real everyday situations are heartbreaking. One of the ladies told me she worries all the time her children will get sick and die because she has no choice but to feed them dirty water.

“At the same time I got to see how uplifting the work WaterAid is doing with communities in Zambia – they are empowering communities so they can help themselves both now and in the future. Even £1 really does count.”
Fifteen pounds can allow a person access to a lasting supply of safe water and sanitation. Please click here for a link to the fundraising page.

For more information contact Philippa Clark on 0191 301 5538 or philippa.clark@nwl.co.uk.

o 783 million people in the world do not have access to safe water. This is roughly one in ten of the world′s population.

o 2.5 billion people in the world do not have access to adequate sanitation. This is around one in three people worldwide.

o Just £15 can enable one person to have access to safe water, improved hygiene and sanitation for their entire life.

o WaterAid’s vision is a world where everyone has access to safe water and sanitation. The international organisation works in 27 countries across Africa, Asia, Central America and the Pacific region to transform lives by improving access to safe water, hygiene and sanitation in some of the world’s poorest communities.

o Over the past 30 years, WaterAid has reached 15.9 million people with safe water and, since 2004, 11 million with sanitation.

o For more information visit www.wateraid.org follow @wateraid or Twitter or visit at www.facebook.com/wateraid.

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