Water Charity of the Week: UNICEF Tap Project

UNICEF Tap Project, Celebrity Tap Pack“When you take water, give water.”

This simple concept is the foundation for the UNICEF Tap Project, founded during World Water Week of 2007, to raise funds for millions of children around the world to gain access to clean water. As we’ve mentioned in several of our posts, millions of people lack access to this basic need. In some nations, women and children must walk more than five miles a day just to collect water for their families. This lengthy process prevents them from other opportunities; children are kept from school, and women are kept from performing other basic, but necessary, domestic duties. Water charities like UNICEF’s Tap Project exist to raise money to support clean water and sanitation solutions in developing countries.

Since World Water Week 2011 is next week (March 20-26), we thought UNICEF’s Tap Project would be the perfect charity to feature on our blog to mark #charitytuesday on twitter. What’s unique about this project is their way of raising money. UNICEF partners with hundreds of restaurants across the U.S., asking patrons to donate $1 each time they order free tap water, during World Water Week. Since it’s inception in 2007, UNICEF Tap Project has raised more than $2.5 million toward clean water solutions.

And this year, UNICEF is teaming up with celebrities on a special “Celebrity Tap Project.” Singers, Rhianna and Taylor Swift along with Selena Gomez, and Entourage actor, Adrian Grenier are bottling tap water from their homes. Each $5 donation made to the UNICEF Celebrity Tap Project will give supporters a chance to win a limited edition Celebrity Tap Pack, featuring one bottle of water from each of these celebrities’ home faucets.

While we don’t normally support bottled water, or the celebrity endorsement of bottled water, this is an interesting way to draw attention to the need for clean water in developing nations. It also conveniently drives home the point that most bottled water is nothing more than tap anyway. Even if it comes from a celebrity, we’re willing to bet that most people wouldn’t be able to tell the difference between their home tap water and the variety that came out of Taylor Swift’s faucet. Still, we can’t help but applaud these four celebrities, and UNICEF, for their innovative efforts.