"ONE BUCKET AT A TIME" - The Deep Springs Blog

Little Miss Moses

by Editor on Friday, April 18, 2014 10:20 AM

This is the story of CEO Michael Ritter's encounter with Miriam and her adopted daughter, "Little Miss Moses."  The mother and daughter's amazing testimony is a reminder of both the miracles and tragedies one witnesses while working in Haiti. 

Madame Eveline receives very first Safe Water Sustainability Award

by deepsprings on Wednesday, February 19, 2014 6:19 PM

January 20, 2014

Dear Madam Eveline;

I write this letter to inform you that the Gangarosa International Health Foundation is honoring you with its first Safe Water Sustainability Award.  Our Foundation is a not-for-profit foundation focused on promoting safe water and sanitation programs. 

Madame Eveline: A Champion for Clean Water

by Editor on Wednesday, February 05, 2014 12:35 PM

Eveline Camille (“Madame Eveline”) has a long history of fighting disease in her own community.  Before she became an employee of the safe water program, Eveline boiled water and sold it by the gallon, targeting mothers of young children and sick people.  Partly because of this initiative in her home town of Jolivert in northwest Haiti, the local clinic hired her in 2003 to become part of the newly founded water program.  At that time, the program served several hundred families who treated their water with Gadyen Dlo, a household water treatment system composed of a safe storage container and locally produced chlorine.


Eveline went on to become the Chief Technician for the program, a post she holds currently.  Her responsibilities include training new families on how to use the system, recruiting and managing chlorine sales agents, conducting follow-up household visits, and promoting use of chlorine in her community.  She also keeps extremely detailed reports on the dates each family purchases chlorine and the results of chlorine tests conducted in their homes.

The quantity and quality of data kept by Eveline has allowed numerous research teams from MIT and Emory University, including a study published in the American Journal of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene that showed that users of chlorine had 59% reduced odds of having diarrhea than non-users.  The research has also shown the importance of what Eveline does on a daily basis for the health of her community.  (I like to say that the alternative phrasing for our finding that “households who received frequent household visits were significantly more likely to have positive chlorine residual at the time of an unannounced visit” is “Madame Eveline is awesome!”   In other words, if Madame Eveline has been to your house recently, you treat your water; if she hasn’t, the odds go down).


The work started by Eveline and her team also provided the model that Deep Springs International has used to expand the program throughout Haiti, especially since the earthquake and cholera outbreak in 2010.  The program that Eveline manages in Jolivert currently serves over 20,000 families.  Overall, Deep Springs International has taken this model to over 65,000 families (over 300,000 individuals) to provide access to chlorine on an ongoing basis.  Through increased chlorine production in response to cholera, Deep Springs has worked with partners such as CDC, UNICEF, Haiti’s Directorate of Water and Sanitation (DINEPA), Partners in Health, Save the Children, Rotary clubs, and many others to treat over 550 million liters of water and save an estimated 3,000 lives.  Eveline played a critical role in networking with local government officials and assisting with trainings as DINEPA distributed chlorine in the Jolivert region as part of their cholera response strategy.


Eveline has made a long-term commitment to improving the health of her community in a very poor region of a country which has had multiple major natural disasters and disease outbreaks.  While the difficult environment in Haiti has caused many efforts to combat waterborne disease to be short-lived, Eveline’s commitment to the cause for over a decade shows that patience and perseverance are possible and necessary to long-term results.  As Deep Springs has experimented with different promotion and distribution models throughout the country, we have become convinced that people are the most critical element of sustainable and scalable programs, and we have attempted to find ways to replicate Madame Eveline in new sites.  She has conducted trainings and participated in workshops in several areas of the country and continues to mentor health agents in the Jolivert area.  Deep Springs is privileged to partner with Eveline and her work to save lives in Haiti.

Deep Springs Blog

Handwashing: Something to Celebrate

by Editor on Tuesday, October 15, 2013 3:10 PM

Washing your hands may seem like an everyday activity, but it is something to celebrate.  Click the title to read more about our events on National Handwashing Day.

Deep Springs Blog


by Editor on Tuesday, October 01, 2013 3:01 PM

Deep Springs International is a non-profit organization that provides a solution to the water crisis in Haiti with the goal of sustainability.  Using a simple and affordable chlorination system called the Bucket of Life, we empower individuals to provide safe water to their communities as a sustainable business.  Even the poorest families can treat their water with this home system, regardless of the source.

Deep Springs Blog
deep springs
clean water
water-borne disease

Haiti Earthquake - Personal Account by Michael Ritter

by deepsprings on Tuesday, January 12, 2010 11:00 PM

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

The cook and I were the only ones in the rectory at the time of the quake.  I was on the second floor and didn’t know what was going on when the place started shaking.  I sat on the floor until a break in the shaking, at which time I went part of the way down the stairs with laptop in hand, only to be stopped by lots of dust rushing up the stairway and concrete blocks crumbling at the doorway.  I returned and looked out the upstairs porch to hear screams from nearby hillsides, indicating that it probably was an earthquake rather than a structural problem or some sort of attack on the building where I was. 

After deciding it would be better to go through the entryway immediately rather than wait, I escaped unscathed through the crumbling entryway that is picture here


The cook was in a different section of the building and emerged after me looking something like the other victims you may have seen on the news – black face and hair with white dust all over and a bit of bleeding on her forehead and feet.  She was tended by a former health agent and is doing fine.


There were about 30 people who live close to the rectory who also deemed their houses unsafe, so they came to sleep on the same space of rock outside the rectory.  Each of us had nothing more than a sheet or blanket to pad us from the ground, which consisted of either large rock or large rock covered with small rocks.  I know many won’t believe this, but it was a cold night, especially with the breeze.  

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