Lesley Fairbairn

Lesley is running 100 days in response to India's Covid crisis

Fundraising for Frank Water Projects
raised of £1,000 target
Frank Water Projects

Verified by JustGiving

RCN 1121273
We fund access to safe water & sanitation to improve health for whole communities


India’s Covid crisis

We're all hearing about the terrible impact Covid is having in India, whose population includes the world’s poorest and most marginalised and therefore the hardest hit by the virus and its effects. 

They are running out of air. They are dying. The emergency relief supplies that have arrived from around the world, seem not to have been dispatched from the capital to other states in India.

Covid in rural India

It’s hard for the press to report on what’s happening outside of the main cities.

We rely on accounts from friends to hear about how the crisis is hitting the small towns, the villages and forests and fields.

As breadwinners lose jobs, fall ill and die, the nutrition of the most marginalised populations is being hardest hit.

Lack of access to clean water, testing and vaccination centres, and the loss of learning for children – these are all having a devastating effect.

Responding swiftly to the pandemic to get recovery assistance to those most in need is critical.

In 2017 I visited Chhattisgarh in rural India, on a running trip with Holidays In Rural India to support women’s health in the region. I was so very struck by the incredible wildlife, the beauty of the forests and temples, and the warmth and open-heartedness of the village and tribes people.

Chhattisgarh is home to some of India’s most vulnerable groups, classified by the government of India as Particularly Vulnerable Tribal Groups

During the pandemic, Frank Water and their Indian NGO partner, Samerth, have been doing incredible work in Chhattisgarh:

  • providing rations and hygiene kits to those who cannot work because of lockdowns
  • assisting in the establishment of testing and vaccination centres
  • assisting in keeping some kind of education going for children who are missing school.

Their scope is wide ranging, and they are working ceaselessly. But they urgently need funds. 

And we can help. 

Please don’t feel that any gift is too small to help. It isn’t.

The people of India face an existential threat. Frank Water and Samerth are addressing the human dimension of the crisis with immediate and purposeful action to save lives and livelihoods.

In these Covid times, I bet you, like me, are more grateful than ever for the easy access to sanitation we have here in the UK. It’s easy to forget that sanitation has needed to be recognised as a human right under international law in order for sanitation to receive the political priority it merits.

Yet millions in rural areas have been 'left behind' and still lack access to water and sanitation.

And now it has emerged that the UK is slashing funding for overseas water, hygiene and sanitation projects by 80%. Of all things in this pandemic!

When I was in rural India I witnessed the lives of so many women, men and children that have been transformed by access to clean, safe water, enabled by Frank Water.

About this fundraising push

Many women in these rural areas walk 2 to 6km a day to fetch water, so I'm matching the lower end! and committing to running a minimum of 2km a day for 100 days (mostly on consecutive days).

Every £12 can help Frank Water provide access to safe water for life for one person. Simply amazing!

I haven’t run for years. I stopped out of laziness, inertia, and a problem with my left achilles and hip. But running for a purpose changes everything and if, together, we can start to reach my financial target, I will fly like the wind (to quote a very lovely 6-year-old). 100 days feels intimidating right now, but I will start today, Sunday 25 April 2021 and I'll update my progress on this page.

Thanks for taking the time to visit my JustGiving page.

I'm well aware that there are many desperate and deserving causes at the moment and that lots of you have other commitments to other charities, but if you can spare a little I promise it will go to a good cause, to an amazingly well run charity, and to people who hate depending on charity - even more than I hate asking for it.

Donating through JustGiving is simple and totally secure. Your details are safe with JustGiving - they'll never sell them on or send unwanted emails. Once you donate, they'll send your money directly to Frank Water. So it's the most efficient way to donate - saving time and cutting costs for the charity. 

If you opt to add Gift Aid, it will increase your donation by 25% at no extra cost to you.

Frank Water Covid-19 statement: With our partners, we’re providing marginalised groups and low-income families with access to safe drinking water, hygiene materials and decent sanitation - the three crucial ingredients that people need to stay safe from disease.

The people we work with include those living in remote, rural or ‘hard to reach locations.’ Often, they are classified as scheduled tribe (ST) or scheduled caste (SC) or particularly vulnerable tribal groups (PVTG). They may not understand their rights – to water, sanitation, land or education – and have lived without state or central government assistance for generations. With our partners, we support communities to claim their rights, to apply for government funding and take ownership of their community, their health and development.

Samerth, Frank Water’s partner in Chhattisgarh, is working closely with chief security officers and local government to combat the wave of Covid that’s debilitating India.

If you choose to donate, I thank you. It will l spur me on, and help Frank Water Projects and Samerth to continue their incredible work for the marginalised people of Chhattisgarh.

About the charity

Frank Water Projects

Verified by JustGiving

RCN 1121273
Frank Water sets up sustainable, community-owned clean water projects in some of the poorest communities in India and Nepal. To date we've worked with 747 communities, providing access to safe, clean drinking water to over 513,229 people. Join us and be part of the solution.

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