That's "Campana-stan" or ''Land of Campana." It reflects the Weltanschauung of Michael E. Campana, President-for-Life of the Republic of Campanastan. Welcome to Campanastan - no passports or visas required!
Texas Agriculture Law Blog Don't let the name fool you - there are lots of water issues in agriculture and Tiffany Dowell of Texas A&M University does a fabulous job with this important Internet resource. Give it a read - I do every day!
The Way of Water Oregon State University Geography PhD Student, Jennifer Veilleux, records her fieldwork, research, and thoughts about transboundary water resources development in the Nile River and Mekong River basins. Particular attention is given to Ethiopia's Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam and Laos' Xayaburi Dam projects.
Thirsty in Suburbia Gayle Leonard documents things from the world of water that make us smile: particularly funny, amusing and weird items on bottled water, water towers, water marketing, recycling, the art-water nexus and working.
This Day in Water History Michael J. 'Mike' McGuire, engineer extraordinaire, NAE member, and author of 'The Chlorine Revolution', blogs about historical happenings in the fields of drinking water and wastewater keyed to calendar dates.
WaSH Resources New publications, web sites and multi-media on water, sanitation and hygiene (WaSH).
Water 50/50 From Jay Famiglietti at UC-Irvine. Fifty lectures in fifty weeks: The 2012 Birdsall-Dreiss Distinguished Lectureship. A global lecture tour delivering the message about our changing water cycle, groundwater depletion, and the future of freshwater availability.
Watershed Moments: Thoughts from the Hydrosphere From Sarah Boon - rediscovering her writing and editing roots after 13 years, primarily as an environmental scientist. Her writing centres around creative non-fiction, specifically memoir and nature writing. The landscapes of western Canada are her main inspiration.
WaterWired All things fresh water: news, comment, and analysis from hydrogeologist Michael E. Campana, Professor at Oregon State University.
Western Water Blog The 'mystery blog' about Western USA water issues. What more can I say?
xAnalytical Doug Walker's xAnalytical blog:Turning Data and Information into Knowledge
I have decided to expose (pun intended) myself and First-Lady-for-Life Mary Frances to ridicule and embarrassment by entering Splashdirect's contest to support World Toilet Day (19 November) by relating my funny/disgusting toilet story.
Hey, it's for a good cause - money will be donated to WaterAid.
Okay, here goes:
It was May 2009 and I was returning from a trip to Armenia. The first leg of my return was a flight from Yerevan to Vienna. As I deplaned in Vienna, I headed for the men's room. Time to avert your eyes, right? No, not yet. After performing the required functions, I washed my hands and returned to the transit lounge.
As I browsed the food offerings, books, gadgets, etc., I noticed people giving me a variety of looks. Some scowled; some grimaced; some smiled; others covered their mouths as their eyes grew wide. Others averted their eyes completely and crinkled their noses. Some even gave me a wide berth or looked down and moved away. I could not figure out what was wrong. Stained or wet pants? No. Something on my shoes? Check. Hat askew? Nahh...
This must have continued for 15 minutes or so. I soon moved to the waiting room where more looks awaited me. Finally, as I stood by myself - unusual in such a crowded room - I noticed a couple staring at me. The woman was whispering something to the man. When she stopped, he looked at her, then at me, frowned, and walked toward me. Many eyes were fixed on him. I knew he was going to say something and I figured my dilemma was about to be resolved.
But I had no idea it would be this: 'Sir, you have about two feet of toilet paper hanging out from the back of your trousers.'
Three years ago today, Haiti was rocked by a mammoth earthquake. Over 200,000
people were killed, another 300,000 or so injured, and over a million made homeless. The capital, Port au Prince, was especially devastated.
Three years on, much of the conversation surrounding the Haiti earthquake recovery has centered around charities squandering money, the gains U.S. contractors made and how Haitians themselves received very little money.
Self-promotion alert! Ten years ago today, the IRS granted the nascent Ann Campana Judge Foundation temporary 501(c)(3) temporary as a publicly- supported nonprofit organization. In 2007 we acquired permanent.determination as a 501(c)(3).
Its mission statement is simple:
The Ann Campana Judge Foundation exists to promote, undertake, support, and fund philanthropic projects focused on potable water, sanitation, and health in developing countries.
Loring Green, Mary Frances Campana, and I serve on the Board of Directors. Check out its officers, projects, and financials (990-EZ forms).
Since its beginnings, the ACJF has raised almost $300,000 - not a lot by most standards - to support water and sanitation projects in a number of countries. It now focuses on Central America, especially Honduras (see map at left) and Nicaragua. We've focused on those two countries because we are getting to know the landscape - political, social, topographic, cultural, etc. Best to work in those areas you know better than others.
From a foundation that supported others, the ACJF is now undertaking its own projects in Honduras (see small map above) and has an informal partnership with the Municipio (analogous to a county) de Omoa(see map to the right) in Honduras, located on the coast in the northwest corner of Honduras near Guatemala. The projects are gravity-flow surface water projects for potable water. We work in the rugged Sierra de Omoa.
One potable water project, Brisas de Rio Cuyamel, was completed last summer. The photo shows the tank with me and friend Rolando López on the far right. Rolando acts as our facilitator; we could not work here without him.
Alex Uriel del Cid, a teacher by profession and also an Omoa city councilman, does the technical stuff. Alex has been instrumental in getting Omoa to help out by providing in-kind services such as 4WD trucks, human power, etc.
I once asked him why he worked in the remote Sierra de Omoa, he said that the people there had no political power so the politicians ignored them and the NGOs would not work there because the chances of failure were too great. I immediately knew this was a man with whom I would like to work.
Omoa MayorRicardo Alvaradohas also been a huge supporter. Here's a photo of him presenting me with a certificate of appreciation. Rolando is on the right.
We are currently working in Los Mejias, a village of several hundred persons. The project should be completed by the end of August.
Total cost to the ACJF is about $22,000. The Brisas de Rio Cuyamel project cost about $9,000.
Here's a photo of some GI pipe that will be used to link the small dam to the 5,000 gallon tank. The smiling man to the right of the pipe is Alex.
We are scoping out additional projects in including Rio Abajo (Omoa) and El Pacayalito (Santa Barbara). We'll also have to raise a fair amount of money, probably about $20K - $25K for each project.
Want to donate? Your money will be put to good work. Only about 2-3% will go to administrative costs.
Several things I've learned:
1) Think sustainability! If you can't do sustainable projects, don't do them at all (thanks to Ned Breslin).
2) Solve the global access to water issue one village at a time. You can't do everything everywhere.
3) Appropriate technology and solutions only, please! [See #1]
4) ¡Muy tranquilo, por favor!
It's been a great ten years. But I'm just getting started; I'm looking forward to ten more.
“If you think you are too small to be effective, you have never been in bed with a mosquito.” - Betty Reese
"There are probably more annoying things than being hectored about African development by a wealthy Irish rock star, but I can't think of one at the moment." - Paul Theroux, referring to Paul Hewson (aka Bono), New York Times, "The Rock Star's Burden", 15 December 2005
Here is the 60 Minutes piecedescribing the alleged fabrications/exaggerations of events in Mortenson's books and allegations of financial mismanagement. Here are Mortenson's responses (#1 and #2) to questions raised by the show.
You can also find responses and statements from Mortenson on the CAI's WWW site.
Troubling accusations; it does look like Mortenson stretched the truth when it came to anecdotes. And the CAI doesn't benefit directly from his book sales and speaking fees, although it appears that his travel expenses are paid by the CAI.
In New West, Dennis Higman wote this compelling piece in defense of Mortenson, "The Greg Mortenson We Knew". Interesting that Higman used the past tense of the verb in the title. Be sure to read the comments on the article; today's quote is from one of the commenters.
Thinking you'd see a scantily-clad Honduran beauty?
Okay, so it's not what you expected, but it's eye candy to me and some villagers in Honduras. The ACJF's project to supply clean drinking water to the residents of Brisas de Cuyamel was just completed, thanks to amigos Rolando López and Alex Urelio del Cid. The village commemorated the event by painting and lettering the water tank.
Abstract Bilateral or multilateral organizations control about 90% of official overseas development assistance (ODA), much of which is wasted. This note traces aid failure to the daisy chain of principal-agent-beneficiary relationships linking rich donors to aid bureaucrats to poor recipients. Waste results when aid middlemen (un)intentionally misdirect ODA. Waste can be reduced by clarifying domestic goals for ODA, using fewer middlemen with greater intrinsic motivation, empowering recipients, and/or replacing bureaucracy with markets.
Keywords Aid - Principal-agent - Asymmetric information - Intrinsic motivation - Public choice
Provocative and worth your time.
"Charity separates the rich from the poor; aid raises the needy and sets him on the same level with the rich." --Evita Peron
When I was young, one of my mother's favorite maxims was "There but for the grace of God go I." She'd usually say it when she saw someone less fortunate than we. It's a saying that has stuck with me lo these many years.
For those of you who prefer a non-religious aphorism, I proffer, "There but for fortune go I."
I couldn't help but think of my mother when I read this column by former pro basketball player Paul Shirley, If You Build It, They Will Come, which takes a decidedly different approach to the Haitian earthquake:
I haven’t donated a cent to the Haitian relief effort. And I probably will not.
I haven’t donated to the Haitian relief effort for the same reason that I don’t give money to homeless men on the street. Based on past experiences, I don’t think the guy with the sign that reads “Need You’re [sic] Help” is going to do anything constructive with the dollar I might give him. If I use history as my guide, I don’t think the people of Haiti will do much with my money either.
In this belief I am, evidently, alone. It seems that everyone has jumped on the “Save Haiti” bandwagon. To question the impulse to donate, then, will probably be viewed as analogous with rooting for Charles Manson, John Wayne Gacy, or the Spice Girls.
Neither the 2004 tsunami nor Hurricane Katrina escape Shirley's vitriol:
After the tsunami of 2004, the citizens of the world wailed and donated and volunteered for cleanup, rarely asking the important – and, I think, obvious – question: What were all those people doing there in the first place? Just as important: If they move back to a place near the ocean that had just been destroyed by a giant wave, shouldn’t our instinct be to say, “Go ahead if you want, but you’re on your own now.”?
We did the same after Hurricane Katrina. We were quick to vilify humans who were too slow to respond to the needs of victims, forgetting that the victims had built and maintained a major city below sea level in a known target zone for hurricanes. Our response: Make the same mistake again. Rebuild a doomed city, putting aside logic as we did.
Shirley even includes a letter to the Haitians in his diatribe:
As we prepare to assist you in this difficult time, a polite request: If it’s possible, could you not re-build your island home in the image of its predecessor? Could you not resort to the creation of flimsy shanty- and shack-towns? And could some of you maybe use a condom once in a while?
The Rest of the World
Shirley's arrogance and ignorance are quite remarkable. I'm guessing that he was a better basketball player than humanitarian.
He makes Rush Limbaugh look like Mother Teresa.
"Blessed is the man, who having nothing to say, abstains from giving wordy evidence of the fact." -- George Eliot
No need to explain what this post is about. Right now, aid organizations need money. I suspect many of you have your favorites but if not, you might consider the organizations accessible through these links.
For those interested in helping immediately, simply text "HAITI" to "90999" and a donation of $10 will be given automatically to the Red Cross to help with relief efforts, charged to your cell phone bill. Keep in mind that if you take the texting approach, it may take a while for your money to show up.It depends upon whether your carrier transfers the money immediately or waits until you pay your bill.
Here is the New York Times' Haiti Twitter. It has reports from individuals, news organizations, and relief agencies in Haiti.
For the second year in a row, the Ann Campana Judge Foundation has filed its Form 990-EZ and Schedule A. These forms are available for public viewing; they are on the ACJF's WWW site and are posted below.
Despite the economic downturn, we took in $41,400 in donations and had income of over $42,000. We incurred more expenses because of legal fees to switch our registration from New Mexico and align our bylaws to Oregon's requirements.
We distributed almost $60,000 in grants.
I'll be visiting Nicaragua and Honduras next month to check out some projects we previously funded and scout some new ones.
"Water is our world. We are water." -- Laura Parrett (age 8)
Late last year I discovered Peaceful Valley Donkey Rescue, a charitable organization based in California with a facility in Virgina and one under development in Texas.
PVDR's latest solicitation focuses on the 'quaint' Texas practice of donkey team roping, which is supposed to be illegal in Texas. PVDR is seeking to establish a permanent facility in Texas to provide a refuge (Texas Burro Rescue) for the many abandoned and abused donkeys needing shelter and a kind hand.
Sometimes ESPN gets it right. Amid the roiling sea of self-deprecating or snarky anchors, narcissistic athletes, bloviating analysts, interminable slam dunks, and sports shills masquerading as journalists, there sometimes appears an island of thoughtfulness and compassion.
One such island was spotted on SportsCenter Sunday morning. There was piece on a philanthropic organization, Project Healing Waters, that takes injured vets and teaches them the joys of fly fishing. Its mission:
Project Healing Waters Fly Fishing, Inc. is dedicated to the physical and emotional rehabilitation of disabled active duty military personnel and veterans through fly fishing and fly tying education and outings.
The story's reporter spoke with a number of disabled vets, who had found a lifeline through the organization and its fly fishing approach. I could not find the story on ESPN's WWW site - probably have to join and log in.
Rivers of Recovery (ROR) represents a pro-active intervention. Our goal is to achieve lasting, positive changes in the lives of disabled veterans. This is done by helping our participants:
Forge a re-connection with a life’s purpose.
Re-connect with themselves, their families, fellow veterans and nature.
Re-build a sense of empowerment; self-esteem and self-confidence.
Demonstrate competence and capability.
Achieve success through learning and accomplishment.
Both these organizations deserve your support.
And thanks to ESPN, I had to rethink my definition of hydrophilanthropy. What those fly fishing folks were doing was HP, pure and simple. So to my definition of hydrophilanthropy I added number 2 below.
Hydrophilanthropy: 1) Altruistic concern for the water, sanitation, and related needs of humankind, as manifested by donations of work, money, or resources. 2) Use of water to express kindness or benevolence, such as the healing of psychological, spiritual, and other wounds.
Publisher Tom Bell has a wonderful editorial, Water professionals are obligated to support charitable water causes, on page 9 of the December 2008 issue of U.S. Water News. It's about donating to charities that bring safe water to villages.
Bell points out that the world annually spends $300B on agricultural subsidies, $50B on bottled water, yet only about $3B on foreign aid specifically devoted to water and sanitation projects. About $10B - $20B per year would be enough to provide clean water to the entire world.
Bell provides some water charities to which you can donate. Here are some more that will make excellent use of your contributions. These are all small organizations that put 'boots on the ground' and most emphasize helping those in need help themselves. In my view this latter aspect is key to success and sustainability.
Just so we don't lull ourselves into thinking that doing water work in emerging regions is not without danger, here is a piece from the Boston Globe about the release of missionary Steven Godbold, 49, who was working with The Evangelical Alliance Mission (TEAM) based in Wheaton, IL.
Godbold has served in Chad since 1991. He was captured on 10 October 2007 in Zoumri in the Tibesti region of northern Chad by the rebel group Movement for Democracy and Justice in Tchad (MDJT). Godbold was assisitng a Chadian NGO transport water well-drilling equipment into the Tibesti region to provide potable water to the residents. The project was being funded by the U.S. Department of Defense.
TEAM issued a statementon 24 July 2008. No ransom was paid, nor were any concessions made to secure his unconditional release.
Godbold, the married father of four, said:
"But I was never physically mistreated. Nobody ever said a threatening word to me. I was treated almost as a guest of honor. We ate together, we drank tea together, we played cards together and we chatted together."
Thanks to Kevin McCray, Executive Director of NGWA, who sent me this information.
"For a wide door for effective service has opened to me, and there are many adversaries." -- 1 Corinthians 16:9 (New American Standard Bible)
Time for a little self-promotion, or should I say self-promotion for a foundation I started and head.
The Ann Campana Judge Foundation recently announced five awards of $12,000 each. That's not a lot of money, but for us (Loring Green and my spouse Mary Frances are also board members) it's a record amount.
Take a look at some of the other projects we've supported, or make a donation to help replenish our coffers. Thank you!
The ACJ Foundation awards grants for work only in Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras, Nicaragua, and Panama, and only to USA-based nonprofit organizations. We do not accept unsolicited proposals.
"The Ann Campana Judge Foundation exists to promote, undertake, support, and fund philanthropic projects focused on potable water, sanitation, and health in developing countries." --Ann Campana Judge Foundation mission statement
For the first time in its 6-year history, the ACJF took in enough money in 2007 to warrant filing a report (Form 990-EZ and Schedule A) with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). So it was with utter joy that I undertook the task of completing the forms and sending them off in plenty of time to meet the 15 May 2008 filing deadline.
As a publicly-supported non-profit charitable organization under section 501(c)(3) of the tax code, our returns are to be available to all who wish to inspect them, so...Voila!
I am in the process of getting the ACJF transferred to Oregon from New Mexico.
We also have a Request For Proposals outstanding with a due date of 26 May 2008. You won't find it on the WWW site, because it is by invitation only. We targeted about 10 organizations who are USA-based and work in Honduras, Guatemala, El Salvador, Nicaragua, and Panama, and hope to award grants of up to $15,000 to about 5.
The ACJF no longer awards funding to non-USA organizations because of Patriot Act reporting requirements, which are too onerous for us.
Thanks to all our supporters! If you wish to contribute, go to the WWW site and click on "Contributions". Can't wait to file again next year!
Circle of Blue Circle of Blue uses journalism, scientific research, and conversations from around the world to bring the story of the global freshwater crisis to life. Here you’ll find new water reports, news headlines, and hear from leading scientists.
Drink Water For Life The idea is simple. Drink water or other cheap beverages instead of expensive lattes, sodas, and bottled water for a set period of time. A day, a week, a month, Lent, Ramadan, Passover, or some other holiday period.
eFlowNet Newsletter From the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) this newsletter has lots of information about environmental flows and related issues.
Sustainable Water Resources Roundtable Since 2002, the Sustainable Water Resources Roundtable (SWRR) has brought together federal, state, corporate, non-profit and academic sectors to advance our understanding of the nation’s water resources and to develop tools for their sustainable management.