West Sacramento, Calif. —Rural Community Assistance Corporation (RCAC) received a $25,000 grant this week from the Union Bank Foundation to support Agua4All, an initiative that increases access to and consumption of safe drinking water in rural California communities.
“We are thrilled to add Union Bank to the growing list of organizations that have stepped up to support increased access to free drinking water so that kids can have better health and better educations,” said Stanley Keasling, RCAC’s chief executive officer.
RCAC, in partnership with The California Endowment, launched Agua4All to raise awareness about the lack of safe drinking water access in schools and communities; improve public health; create unique public-private partnerships to install water filling stations where they are needed most; and advocate for sustainable long-term solutions to ensure safe drinking water for all. Two other agencies, Community Water Center and Pueblo Unido CDC, have provided on-the-ground support for the initiative.
Funding for Agua4All continues to be a high priority for RCAC in its efforts to create vibrant, healthy and enduring rural communities throughout the West. Currently, more than 500 California communities lack access to safe drinking water. Long-term exposure to unsafe drinking water containing contaminants such as arsenic can cause cancer and a host of other illnesses. It has also been associated with developmental effects, cardiovascular disease, neurotoxicity and diabetes. Increased water consumption is also important to children’s education and development, and overall community health.
RCAC provides training, technical and financial resources and advocacy so rural communities can achieve their goals and visions. Founded in 1978, RCAC serves rural communities in 13 western states and certain Pacific islands. Services are available to communities with populations of fewer than 50,000, other nonprofit groups, Tribal organizations, farmworkers, colonias and other specific populations. To find out more about RCAC, visit www.rcac.org.
Dawn Van Dyke