The mission of Water Charity is to implement immediate, efficient, and practical projects around the world to provide safe water and effective sanitation to those in need.


Water Charity is Going on the Road

Beach at Laamu, MaldivesWe have finalized a very exciting travel itinerary that will take us to New York, Washington, D.C, Sri Lanka, Maldives, and India. It will keep us on the road from Mid-September through mid-October, 2011. I’ll briefly describe where we’re going, and report back later as these events unfold.

On September 16, we will participate in the International Water Forum at the United Nations. This event, spearheaded by the Chronicles Group, is billed as a convocation of world leaders, academics, NGOs, and private sector representatives to take the first step toward organizing a worldwide education and awareness campaign on the global water crisis. Held concurrently with the opening of the 66th Session of the United States General Assembly, there will be panels and work sessions aimed at developing a comprehensive plan that will lead us into the future.

In Washington, D.C., we will participate in events celebrating the 50th Anniversary of the Peace Corps. Organized by the National Peace Corps Association, over a jam-packed period of 5 days we will be trained in advocacy (on the Peace Corps message as well as other environmental and social issues facing the world today), knock on the doors of our Senators and Congressmen, socialize with members of various country groups, study the issues unique to individual countries, meet with luminaries (ranging from media stars to presidents of countries), and give ourselves a well-deserved pat on the back for 50 years of service by over 200,000+ volunteers in 139 countries.

We will then move on to Sri Lanka, where we will meet with a number of NGOs to hammer out projects for implementation. True to Water Charity’s “do it now” approach, these new projects will be rolled out by the end of the year.

The centerpiece of or trip will be the Six Senses Water/Wo/Men Event at Laamu, Maldives, September 30 through October 4, 2011. This extravaganza is to raise money for Water Charity and two other world-class charitable organizations. It will feature a star-studded field of watermen, including surfers, windsurfers, kitesurfers, divers, and free divers. It will be a coming together of famous environmentalists and conservationist, and will feature lively discussions and work sessions.

During the event, we will travel to an adjoining island to work hands on to build rainwater catchment and storage systems for villagers on a nearby island.

We will then move on to Mumbai, our first stop in India. We will meet with several local NGOs, in an effort to line up new projects to commence early next year.

Our final stop in India will be Ahmedabad. We will have the opportunity to wrap up and evaluate the Javavandh Rainwater Harvesting Project and Mansangh Vandh Well Project which we recently implemented as our first project in the country. We will expand upon and replicate our successes.

We’ll be back in California in mid-October. Our connectivity and working time will be limited until then, so we apologize in advance if it seems that regular Water Charity business has slowed down to a snail’s pace. We’ll be all caught up by the end of the year, and will look forward to a great 2012, building upon our amazing successes of this year.

52 Pumps in 52 Weeks – Senegal – Project 10 - Saare Gouna, Community Garden

52 Pumps in 52 Weeks – Senegal – Project 10 - Saare Gouna, Community GardenThis project is part of our 52 Pumps in 52 Weeks Program, being implemented by Peace Corps Volunteers Marcie Todd and Garrison Harward. To read about the program and follow its progress, CLICK HERE.

Location
Saare Gouna, Senegal

Community Description
Saare Gouna is the third and final village in the clump of villages near Saare SambaThika.

Saare Gouna’s community garden is the best organized garden I have seen yet. There are 29 women who work in the garden and each one has her own space, divided by hundreds of tree branches sown together with prickly bush.

Each woman’s plot is a half a chord, though some of the older women have a bit more space, and they grow the veggies of their choosing.

52 Pumps in 52 Weeks – Senegal – Project 10 - Saare Gouna, Community GardenAlmost every woman grows hibiscus, whose leaves are harvested for sauce and flowers for juice, and okra. The combination is like the tomato basil duo we Americans grow in our back yards.

Project Description
Saare Gouna has one-well maintained and clean well located in the middle of their space. Each of the women pull about 20 buckets of water minimum for their gardens which becomes very tiresome, and a pump will speed along the process greatly while also saving energy.

Project Impact
The 29 members of the garden will directly benefit from the pump. Indirectly, all of their families will benefit as well.

Peace Corps Volunteer Directing Project
Marcie Todd

Comments
This is another great project to add to the string of successes. The benefit to the women and their families will be long lasting.

Dollar Amount of Project
$100.00

Donations Collected to Date
$100.00

Dollar Amount Needed
$0.00 - This project has now been fully funded through the generosity of Cynthia Sperry, of Fayetteville, NC, USA.

If you now contribute $100, your name will be placed on the waiting list to adopt the next project in order.

If you wish to contribute less than $100, the money will be applied toward the overall program.

This project has been finished. To read about the conclusion of the project, CLICK HERE.

Conclusion of Women’s Community Center Project – Paraguay

Conclusion of Women’s Community Center Project – ParaguayThis project has been completed under the direction of Peace Corps Volunteer Matthew Lebon. To read about the beginning of the project, CLICK HERE.

The project was to complete the water and sanitation portions of a community effort to build a women’s community center in this rural community in Paraguay.

The project resulted in the construction of a facility with a kitchen, bathroom, electricity, running water, and necessary supplies for the women to use to develop business opportunities, including a bakery.

The Water Charity contribution specifically allowed for water to be provided in the kitchen for drinking, cooking, and cleaning, and in the bathroom, for sanitary and hygiene purposes.

The project served as an educational experience for the women's group, and its successful conclusion added to their confidence to be able to proceed to develop new economic endeavors.

Approximately 100 people directly benefited from this project. Hundreds more, including the families of the participating women, will indirectly benefit from the revenue-gaining ventures in which the women will now be able to participate.

We extend our thanks to Matthew for successfully completing this project.

We again wish to thank The Soneva SLOW LIFE Trust for providing the funding for this project.

Javavandh Rainwater Harvesting Project and Mansangh Vandh Well Project – India

Javavandh Rainwater Harvesting Project and Mansangh Vandh Well Project – IndiaThis project is to build two rainwater harvesting systems in Javavandh and a well in Mansangh vandh (hamlet) of Rapar Taluka, Gujarat, India.

The project consists of two parts. The first is the construction a rainwater harvesting system to serve a village, including an underground tank, and another for a school. The second is the construction of a percolated dug well in the stream of a river that will generate water throughout the year.

The combined projects will directly benefit 105 families, or 500 people.

The project will be carried out in partnership with Samerth Charitable Trust, an Indian non-profit development organization that works towards accelerating a humane, sustainable, and equitable society. Samerth has focused on improving the conditions of marginalized communities since 1992. Samerth has been working in Kutch for the past 11 years, with interventions in drinking water, community health, migrant children’s education, and promoting livelihood.

Kutch, which comprises 23 % area of the state, receives only 13% of the annual rainfall. Therefore, the area has been designated a “Water Scarce Region.”

The project fits in with an overall plan to ensure that there is sufficient water availability, safe sanitation, and effective hygiene practices. It is aimed specifically to impact on the high rate of child mortality existing in the region.

Javavandh Rainwater Harvesting Project and Mansangh Vandh Well Project – IndiaJavavandh Rainwater Harvesting Systems
Community System
Javavandh is a hamlet on the edge of the Small Runn (desert) of Kutch, situated five kilometers inside of the main village called Palasava, in Rapar block. It is one of the last habitats near the desert and fifteen families (total 90 members including men, women and children) are living there.

Samerth has supported this vandh by providing two earthen check dams in the past, but due to bad monsoon seasons on many occasions in the last few years, the people are facing acute water shortages for drinking purposes. There is no supply of water through the pipeline in this area, and therefore the people have to rely on the water available at the dams. When this is not available, the women must go 4 to 5 kilometers to get water for drinking and cooking.

Samerth has identified this vandh for the construction of rainwater harvesting systems. The capacity of the underground tank will be approximately 10,000 liters. This facility will provide safe drinking water to the people of Javavandh, when it is most needed, for a period of 40 to 60 days, depending on the amount of rainfall each year.

Most of the times the people will take water from the earthen check dams for their daily use and they will utilize the underground water in an emergency only. This is like a safe deposit for them and they will utilize this water when the water in the dams has become less, and during the night, when its use will serve to benefit women and young girls.

School System
The village school in Javavandh has 45 children from surrounding areas are enrolled. There is no drinking water available to the children, and they have to take water to school with them each day.

One roof water harvesting system will be built on the school campus to provide the children with drinking water while they are at school.

The system will consist of gutters around the roof of the school, a storage tank, and piping.

Javavandh Rainwater Harvesting Project and Mansangh Vandh Well Project – IndiaMansangh Percolated Dug Well

A hand-dug well will be built in Mansangh vandh, a remote area where water facilities are not available.

Samerth has experience in this construction technology, having built 80 dug wells in the Rapar block to date.

The well will be built on the farm of Mr. Gelabhai Ganeshbhai Koli in Mansang vandh, 3 kilometers inside of the main village. The family of nine has been living in this field for the last four years without a direct water source.

The dug well support will solve the problem of drinking water for the entire village of 105 families, or 500 people. At the same time it will provide a reserve of water for irrigation purposes in case of emergency.

Conclusion

The project has been designed to provide for the water needs of a vulnerable population. Through the development of water management committees, the judicious use of water will be ensured and the structures will be maintained. As part of a larger community development program, it will serve the people of the area for many years to come.

This project has now been fully funded through the generosity of the SLOW LIFE Foundation as a part of their Clean Water Projects initiative in collaboration with Positive H2O (+H2O).

This project has been finished. To read about the conclusion of the project, CLICK HERE.

Conclusion of 52 Pumps in 52 Weeks – Senegal – Project 9 – Thies, Peace Corps Training Center

Conclusion of 52 Pumps in 52 Weeks – Senegal – Project 9 – Thies, Peace Corps Training CenterThis project has been completed under the direction of Peace Corps Volunteers Marcie Todd and Garrison Harward. To read about the beginning of the project, CLICK HERE.

Garrison reports:

While I was very excited to put together this pump for the Training Center this week, I was not too excited about the time frame in which I had to complete the project. I arrived in Thies with just a day and a half to put the whole thing together before a scheduled demo for the Health and Environmental Education volunteers at their In Service Training. After sitting in the medical unit in Dakar for 6 days this sudden shift was a little jarring. Then again I enjoy being busy so it was nice to get back to work.

I started my day in the Thies market where I was lucky enough to find a beautiful new oil drum within about half an hour. Most of the time the ones available for purchase are old and dented but this one was shiny and new. So new in fact that it was still extremely greasy. I cleaned it out and brought it next door to a local welding shop where we welded four metal plates to the top and then bolted on the pump. After this we cut a small hole in the middle of the barrel and attached a PVC pipe to recycle the output back into the system: this way we wouldn't have to constantly refill the barrel. After this the install went pretty much like any other pump. The system is exactly the same, just on a very miniature scale.

On the demonstration day volunteers broke up into groups and went to different stations where they learned about various appropriate technologies such as improved stoves, nutritional supplements, and yes of course rope pumps. Every group seemed genuinely interested as they tried it out, asked questions, and even inquired as to how they could get a pump for their village.

The real indicator of success however in my opinion was the fact that after all the volunteers were gone about 6 Senegalese staff members came up to look at the pump and see how it works. One of the drivers said he was going to bring his son to see it, three women from the kitchen wouldn't stop saying good work no matter how much I tried to stop them and one man who comes by to trim the trees asked where he can buy one. Half the battle of improving living conditions here is just finding a way to motivate people to try something new. This pump inspires people and gives them hope that they really can better their lives.

Pump Output: 35 Liters/ Min

Total Number of People Benefiting: 100-200 per year

Funder: Christina and Jim Fernandez

Conclusion of 52 Pumps in 52 Weeks – Senegal – Project 9 – Thies, Peace Corps Training CenterConclusion of 52 Pumps in 52 Weeks – Senegal – Project 9 – Thies, Peace Corps Training Center

Conclusion of Village Improvement Project – Fiji

Conclusion of Village Improvement Project – FijiThis project has been completed under the direction of Peace Corps Volunteer N. Parker. To read about the beginning of the project, CLICK HERE.

The project was to construct a drainage system in a village that experienced landslides and flooding, as part of a larger community development and sanitation effort.

Numerous people worked together for a month to complete the job. Work during the day was broken up with lunch prepared by women of the community, who also contributed to the project by carrying sand from the bay to mix with the cement.

In the construction of the V-drain, there was previously only one person with experience in that type of construction, but the work proceeded well. The community learned a lot about planning, development, construction, and health in carrying out the project.

The community dealt with potential problem of greywater washing down the slopes into the ocean. The drain was situated such that the water could be absorbed by plants with a fibrous root system, which worked to purify the water.

The community now collects small amounts of money to be reserved for recurring costs, upkeep, and repairs, so the project will be self-sustaining.

The project was successful, and now provides a direct benefit to 56 people in the village.

52 Pumps in 52 Weeks – Senegal – Project 9 – Thies, Peace Corps Training Center

52 Pumps in 52 Weeks – Senegal – Project 9 – Thies, Peace Corps Training CenterThis project is part of our 52 Pumps in 52 Weeks Program, being implemented by Peace Corps Volunteers Marcie Todd and Garrison Harward. To read about the program and follow its progress, CLICK HERE.

Location
Thies, Senegal

Community Description
As we've said before, this project isn't just about installing 52 pumps. That's only the beginning. The real benefits will come from the knowledge we gain, the technicians we train, and the infrastructure for pump production that we establish as a result of this initial run.

In keeping with that vision this week's community is a little different from our usual demographic. Welcome to the Peace Corps Training Center located in the regional capital of Thies. This beautiful complex of old colonial buildings and gardens was our first home here in Senegal when we arrived as wide-eyed trainees. Every volunteer spends their first 9 weeks here and in surrounding villages learning local languages, receiving technical training, and learning the cultural skills they will need to be effective volunteers in the field.

This is also the site of In Service Training where volunteers further specialize their technical skills and learn about appropriate technologies, such as rope pumps. This center isn't just for volunteers though; it serves as a resource for the Senegalese people throughout the year through Master Farmer trainings, and Counterpart Workshops where volunteers and Senegalese partners from each village learn how to best collaborate during their two years of service.

Finally this center also holds international conferences where volunteers from other Peace Corps countries come to share best practices and collaborate on large international projects such as the new initiative to stomp out Malaria in Africa. It is truly an asset to Senegal and Peace Corps West Africa as a whole.

Project Description
In order to better support the training of Senegalese counterparts and PCVs in rope pump technology we will install a demonstration pump at the Training Center.

This unit will be mounted on an oil barrel rather than a well so that the entire rig will be portable and able to be taken to different sites to demonstrate the technology and teach welders how to construct the pump.

There is only so much that can be learned from looking at diagrams. With a functioning demo model it will be possible to establish new producers in more remote areas away from the Kolda and Kaolack regions where we currently work.

Project Impact
New trainees, current Senegal volunteers at trainings, volunteers from other Peace Corps countries at conferences, and local farmers and welders will all benefit from this pump. All told, between 100-200 people a year will directly benefit.

Peace Corps Volunteer Directing Project
Garrison Harward

Comments
This training pump will facilitate the proliferation of this great technology, and will have a profound impact.

Dollar Amount of Project
$100.00

Donations Collected to Date
$100.00

Dollar Amount Needed
$0.00 - This project has now been fully funded through the generosity of Christina Fernandez, of San Francisco, California, USA.

If you now contribute $100, your name will be placed on the waiting list to adopt the next project in order.

If you wish to contribute less than $100, the money will be applied toward the overall program.

This project has been finished. To read about the conclusion of the project, CLICK HERE.

52 Pumps in 52 Weeks – Senegal – Project 9 – Thies, Peace Corps Training Center52 Pumps in 52 Weeks – Senegal – Project 9 – Thies, Peace Corps Training Center
52 Pumps in 52 Weeks – Senegal – Project 9 – Thies, Peace Corps Training Center52 Pumps in 52 Weeks – Senegal – Project 9 – Thies, Peace Corps Training Center

Conclusion of 52 Pumps in 52 Weeks – Senegal – Project 8 - Hann Maristes

Conclusion of 52 Pumps in 52 Weeks – Senegal – Project 8 - Hann MaristesThis project has been completed under the direction of Peace Corps Volunteers Marcie Todd and Garrison Harward. To read about the beginning of the project, CLICK HERE.

Marcie reports:

The early morning before arriving at Hann Maristes Prison I was a little nervous that maybe I had forgotten something essential from Kolda. The trip from Kolda to Dakar is 14 hours in the best of situations and missing one important thing could cause a series of mishaps. I checked my luggage two or three times to make sure I had it all and then went out to look for a taxi. It is always a risk to get into a taxi when you are unsure where you are going, but I was lucky to find a driver who knew the exact location.

Upon arrival to the prison for the first time I was greeted by the Tostan Fulbright Scholar, Marie who contacted us about putting in a pump, and Cisse, the guard. They promptly went on a search to find a mason to mold the well cap and by 4:30 pm the cap was beautifully done.

Conclusion of 52 Pumps in 52 Weeks – Senegal – Project 8 - Hann Maristes5 days passed, the cement had set and it was now time to do the installation. This time when I arrived the 6 boys who regularly work in the garden were there, along with Cisse and the social worker Saliou. The boys were very interested in the work that was ahead of us. They wanted to be involved in every step of the process and do all of the work. They were so passionate, willing to learn, and problem solve.

We started by lighting a fire and melting the PVC a bit in order to create joints where one pipe could fit snuggly into the other. We threaded the rope and then glued the PVC together and added the block on the bottom whose job is to stabilize the PVC. Then we waited for the glue to dry.

In the past we've tried to lower the pipe before the glue had dried and everything comes undone. We have to pull the system out, re-glue, and then wait even longer. Patience is key to doing pump installations.

After waiting for the glue to dry we noticed a huge crack in the PVC that sits in the block at the bottom of the well. This would pose a huge problem, as the rope would get stuck in the pipe and therefore prevent the pump from working. We promptly broke the bike open to salvage the pieces inside and casted a new bottom brick. We had to wait another three days for the brick to set before finishing installation.

3 days passed and we decided to start the day with a small coffee party. David Vaughan, the Peace Corps Volunteer that works at the prison, Cissee, the 6 young men and I watered the garden, then relaxed under the tree while waiting for coffee to brew. Around noon we rounded up the group and put the pipe in the well. After knotting the rope we gave it a test. It was a little bit tough at first but after the knots settled into place it became simple to turn and had a really nice flow. The boys were really excited and washed their smiling faces in the water flow.

The pump installation in the Hann Maristes Prison was completed in conjunction with Tostan. Here is a bit from them:

Since 1991, Tostan, (means “breakthrough” in Wolof) based in Dakar, Senegal, has implemented its Community Empowerment

Conclusion of Parina Community Spring Project – Peru

Conclusion of Parina Community Spring Project – PeruThis project has been completed under the direction of Kristen Gunther graduate student at the Loma Linda University School of Public Health. To read about the beginning of the project, CLICK HERE.

This project was to improve one community spring in Parina by building a protective structure and a cement catchment box. The protected spring provides a clean water source to the community and nearby elementary school, while the catchment box allows for increased water storage and distribution throughout the year.

Kristen reports:

During the course of this project the community was able to come together to clean the existing spring, excavate space for the new catchment box, effectively protect the natural water spring, and build a cement catchment box with a corrugated metal door for maintenance access. The cleaning process of the natural spring began in March, 2011 with approximately 10 community members working to remove plants, algae, rocks and trash from within the spring.

After the spring had been cleaned and a diversion canal was dug to reroute flowing water, construction of the cement catchment box began. The materials were bought in the nearby cities of Ilave and Puno and delivered to Parina.

Conclusion of Parina Community Spring Project – PeruConstruction was completed by one community construction professional and another experienced community member. These two men worked to implement a plan for the catchment box developed by a local engineer, Suma Marka, and the community.

The cement catchment box was constructed to measure 1.25 meters by 1.23 meters according to the measurements of the Triplay wood used to build the box frame. Iron re-enforcement bars were placed at centimeter intervals within the catchment box to ensure stability.

The cement was then poured into the frame to complete the catchment box. After the cement dried, a corrugated metal top with two doors and a lock was secured on top of the cement box. The design of the metal top allows for easy access to the catchment box for regular maintenance. The design of the metal top also ensures that the catchment box is locked and inaccessible to the public to prevent contamination.

After construction of the cement catchment box, the top and wall were constructed to protect the natural spring. In order to construct the top of the spring community members collected Eucalyptus wood to use as the frame. The frame was covered by a screen and dry material before cement was added to complete the protected spring top. This was a method of construction preferred by the community using local materials and cement. The cement top ensures that no debris enters the spring from above.

In addition, a cement wall with a small door was created to enclose the spring, while allowing access for maintenance. A 2” wide PVC tube was placed between the spring and the catchment box and covered with dirt to allow sufficient water flow into the catchment box. Within the catchment box a 2” wide PVC tube was inserted with a connection to a ½” PVC tube and tap to allow water to exit the catchment box. This exit serves as a collection point for the community while reducing the amount of microorganisms that enter the catchment box.

To complete construction of the protected spring and catchment box construction workers placed 2” PVC outlet tubes into the top of the cement catchment box to prevent overflow. Community members plan to add an additional tube to the catchment box and a cement trough several meters from the spring to provide drinking water for farm animals.

The community participation in decision making during this project aimed to construct a product that the community developed and will therefore maintain. Community members in Parina were very excited to assist with cleaning the spring, purchasing the materials and constructing the well.

While the women in the community were not involved in the construction process, they assisted with spring clean-up and were happy to be involved in the project. Community members expressed their gratitude for this project and are very happy to have a clean water source close to their homes. This has initiated their desire to improve other community springs and poorly maintained wells throughout Parina.

Overall, this project was successful at engaging the community to provide a clean water source which will ultimately lead to improved health. Thank you for your support and partnership to complete this protected spring for the community of Parina!

We are grateful to Kristen for completing the project and to The Soneva SLOW LIFE Trust for providing the funding.

Conclusion of Parina Community Spring Project – PeruConclusion of Parina Community Spring Project – Peru

Conclusion of 52 Pumps in 52 Weeks – Senegal – Project 7 - Keur Andallah

Conclusion of 52 Pumps in 52 Weeks – Senegal – Project 7 - Keur AndallahThis project has been completed under the direction of Peace Corps Volunteers Marcie Todd and Garrison Harward. To read about the beginning of the project, CLICK HERE.

Garrison reports:

Keur Andallah is still just as far away as it was during the prep for this install. This morning I was up once again at 6 am and on my bike for 25 k, then we worked all morning and I rode home after lunch. Needless to say I am exhausted. It’s all worth it though when at the end of the day there’s another working pump.

We started this install several weeks ago but had to put things off a bit when I got sick. In early July we cast the well cap and in the process found a new mason who is by far the best team Kaolack has used thus far. He was amazingly quick at picking up our technique for casting the cap without a form, and spent probably an extra half hour making sure that everything was perfectly level and smooth.

After I got back from Dakar we scheduled a day and I came out for the rest of the install. All of my previous mistakes finally paid off! This install went phenomenally smoothly. Well with one exception, but we’ll get to that in a second. We started by threading the rope through the pipe and gluing all the joints. While that was drying we tipped up the well cap, washed it off, and placed it on the well. Next we lowered the pipe into the well and adjusted the length to fit under the cap.

Here’s where we hit a little snag. The block at the bottom was sitting on a little ledge when we thought it was all the way at the bottom of the well. This means that when we trimmed the pipe it was just a little too short. We can still fit the pipe in the connecting fixture but now it has a tendency to want to fall out. We may end up gluing it even though that will make the pump less easily maintained.

In the end everyone was very pleased though. The output is fantastic and because the pump is being used as a water source for animals as well as people, even the men were getting involved with pulling water. There is a slight problem with the bolts in the concrete but that is being re-cemented today and shouldn’t pose a problem in the future.

Pump Output: 37 Liters/ Min

Total Number of People Benefiting: 200

Funder: Walter Wilhelm

Conclusion of 52 Pumps in 52 Weeks – Senegal – Project 7 - Keur AndallahConclusion of 52 Pumps in 52 Weeks – Senegal – Project 7 - Keur Andallah

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To see our latest projects, please go to http://watercharity.com
This site is no longer maintained and everything that was here is now posted over there. Thank you for your consideration.



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Water Charity Honored

Water Charity Honored by Metropolitan Water District on World Water Day 2010

Water Charity was honored by the Metroplitan Water District and Friends of United Nations on World Water Day 2010 for our work in helping people obtain clean water worldwide.

WHO Guidelines for Drinking Water Quality

The Guidelines for Drinking-water Quality, third edition is now available as one integrated volume incorporating revisions reflected in the First and Second addenda.

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Quotations

Water is the only drink for a wise man.
Henry David Thoreau
US Transcendentalist author (1817 - 1862)