Thirsty Planet reaches £2m clean water charity milestone

Harrogate Water managing director James Cain OBE.
Harrogate Water managing director James Cain OBE.

The Harrogate company behind charity spring water brand Thirsty Planet has announced a major milestone after raising £2m for clean water projects, helping some of the world’s poorest communities.

Thirsty Planet was launched by Harrogate Water Brands – the company most famous for its Harrogate Spring Water – in 2007 to raise money for independent British charity Pump Aid. Every bottle sold provides a guaranteed donation towards clean water projects and improved sanitation in sub-Saharan Africa.

Making the announcement to celebrate World Water Day yesterday (March 22), managing director James Cain OBE said: “We launched Thirsty Planet to give something back and are delighted to have passed the £2m mark. It’s been an incredible journey with a fabulous charity that works tirelessly to provide something that we take for granted in this country, clean drinking water.”

World Water Day is a UN-backed campaign to tackle water inequality. There are currently more than 663 million people who have no safe water supply and are forced to use contaminated water.

Thirsty Planet has improved the lives of more than 1.3 million people by funding 9,500 elephant pumps, which are community-owned, simple and reliable, providing villages with a clean water supply. The first pump installed by Pump Aid is still working after 20 years.

Pump Aid works alongside rural communities, helping them to build and maintain pumps using locally-available materials. Unsafe water is the biggest killer of children in Africa, claiming 4,000 young lives a day.

Thirsty Planet marketing manager Nicky Cain said: “We give a guaranteed donation with every product sold, which means that shoppers know that they contribute with every purchase. This transparency also provides much greater certainty to Pump Aid. It’s the only model that allows the charity to plan a cost-effective delivery programme.”

In 2015, James Cain was made an OBE for his charitable work with Thirsty Planet.