Arvin, Calif. – Rural Community Assistance Corporation (RCAC) is pleased to announce that Arvin Interim Solutions POU program, a collaboration between Arvin Public Schools, Community Water Center and RCAC to deliver safe drinking water to Arvin school children, reached a significant milestone of providing more than 100,000 gallons of arsenic free drinking water between June 2015 and November 2016. Working with a grant from The California Endowment to install water bottle filling stations and State Water Resources Control Board (SWRCB) Interim Solutions funding to install point-of-use (POU) filtration systems, the program has been highly successful. Analysis shows that students’ water consumption has grown from 6,502 gallons per month in August 2015 to 12,247 gallons per month in October 2016.
The California SWRCB awarded funds to RCAC to procure, install and monitor arsenic filtration systems throughout the city of Arvin, where the arsenic levels exceed safe drinking water standards. Site sponsors Kern High School District-Arvin High School, Arvin Union Elementary School District, Arvin Community Services District, city of Arvin, University of California San Francisco and other partners provided invaluable partnership during project implementation and ongoing operations and maintenance.
“Most importantly, this program has demonstrated an effective method for encouraging children to drink more water and ensuring that the water they consume is safe. As a result the state of California has provided $10 million to replicate this effort in other communities around the state where the water is unsafe to drink,” said Stanley Keasling, RCAC chief executive officer.
In addition to overseeing filling station and arsenic filter installations, RCAC staff worked with local partner, Community Water Center, to provide community outreach and education, distribute reusable water bottles and conduct activities to promote safe drinking water consumption. Initial results show that the program served 5,600 students and community residents who increased their water intake dramatically since the arsenic filters were installed.
Founded in 1978, RCAC provides training, technical and financial resources and advocacy so rural communities can achieve their goals and visions. RCAC serves rural communities in 13 western states and the Pacific islands. Most of our work in Alaska, Hawaii and the western Pacific is focused in Native communities. RCAC also works with majority Latino communities and Tribes across the Southwest. RCAC provides a broad range of community and economic development services and lending to support local efforts. Visit RCAC’s Programs & Services page to find out more our services.
Contact: David Wallis
Technical Service Program Manager