U.S. African Diaspora Community Raises Fund to Support Clean Water in Africa

FACE Africa, an organization founded by Africans diaspora citizens in the U.S., celebrated World Water Day and its tenth annual water, sanitation and hygiene gala anniversary by hosting a fundraising event to support clean water on the continent.

According to a press release issued by the organization, the event took place on Saturday, March 23 in New York City. It brought together nearly 500 guests, highlighting the African diaspora’s power to raise funds and awareness for clean water initiatives.

The event honored retired Ivorian professional footballer, Didier Drogba, South African actress and television personality Nomzamo Mbatha, and prominent U.S. business executive Bozoma Saint John. The group reported generating at least US$230,000 from sponsorships, gala ticket sales, donations, and pledges.

FACE Africa’s founder and CEO Saran Kaba Jones, a Liberian, said the funds would go toward the organization’s clean water advocacy and infrastructure initiatives.

“As always, we were so touched and humbled by the outpouring of love and support from our sponsors, donors and the hundreds of guests who came out in support of our work and mission,” Jones said.

“It was truly a magical evening of celebration and inspiration and we’re so grateful to every single person who joined us on Saturday night.”

Countries in sub-Saharan Africa have some of the lowest access to clean water. The release said FACE Africa has impacted over 150,000 people in Liberia (especially in River Cess) and Nigeria through its clean water initiatives. It plans to expand to Ghana, Kenya, and Mozambique.

Other personalities at the fundraiser included the vice president and chief diversity and inclusion officer of Target Corporation, Caroline Wanga; the president of the Toronto Raptors, Masai Ujiri; the CEO of Red Media Group, Adebola Williams; and Nelson Muffuh from the Executive Office of the U.N. secretary-general.

Tanzanian pop star Vanessa Mdee and South African artist Moonchild Sennelly also performed at an after party following the ceremony.

Featured photo by FACE Africa

Gbatemah Senah

Gbatemah is a graduate of the University of Liberia and a recipient of the Jonathan P. Hicks Scholarship for Mass Communications. In 2017, Senah won three Press Union of Liberia awards: Women's Rights Reporter of the Year, Legislative Reporter of the Year, and Land Rights Reporter of the Year. In 2018, he was also recognized as the Land Rights Reporter of the Year.

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