Water Well in Haiti to Quench Villagers Thirst, Empower Women

COCONUT CREEK, Fla. (April 28, 2011) –As a hobbyist quilter, Mary Pat Palombo feels at ease behind her Singer sewing machine. But she still remembers feeling helpless as she watched destitute Nicaraguan women trek for miles in search of water for their families to drink. That life-changing experience, which still brings tears to her eyes, inspired Palombo to sew high-fashion tote bags for the nonprofit Food For The Poor.

Mary Pat Palombo

Listening to contemporary classical pianist Ann Sweeten, and using bold-colored fabrics with eye-catching patterns, Palombo is determined to channel her talents to empower women by raising funds to have a water well drilled in a remote village in Haiti. Palombo’s tote bags are available for a minimum donation of $70 toward her water project. One hundred percent of proceeds will be donated to Food For The Poor.

"I call my project 'Totes for Water' because I want to empower women who must tote their water long distances to provide for themselves and their families," said Palombo, who was surprised to learn that one gallon of water weighs 8.35 pounds. "By doing this, I hope to be sharing my faucet with them. Water is the gift that keeps on giving. Water leads to food, hygiene, hydration, farming, jobs and learning."

To support the effort, make checks out to Food For The Poor and include a special reference number “SC#75375” so the money can be allocated to Palombo’s water project. Donations less than $70 dollars are also welcome.

"A common chore for female children in developing countries is to collect and carry heavy buckets of water on their heads for their family’s daily needs," said Robin Mahfood , President/CEO of Food For The Poor. "Often this time-consuming and treacherous task causes girls to miss class and remain uneducated, trapped in a life of poverty."

Aldo Palombo and daughter Kimberly Palombo with students in front of the school he renovated in honor of his wife Mary Pat Palombo's 50th birthday.

In 2008, for Palombo’s 50th birthday, her husband Aldo renovated a Nicaraguan school in her honor. Together with their two daughters, Kimberly and Regina, they traveled to inaugurate the school and meet the beneficiaries. It was during this journey that the Palombo family first realized the importance of water. Women carried buckets to the pump inside the schoolyard because it was the closest access they had to clean water.

“Water is such an essential part of life that we take for granted,” said Aldo Palombo.

Food For The Poor, the third-largest international relief and development organization in the nation, does much more than feed millions of hungry poor in 17 countries of the Caribbean and Latin America. This interdenominational Christian agency provides emergency relief assistance, clean water, medicines, educational materials, homes, support for orphans and the aged, skills training and micro-enterprise development assistance, with more than 96 percent of all donations going directly to programs that help the poor.

For more information, please visit www.FoodForThePoor.org.

Jennifer Leigh Oates
Food For The Poor
Public Relations
954-427-2222 x 6054