Making a Difference

Phase Two of Kininya Project to Start Construction!

We want to thank the generous donors who helped SFSW reach a $4,000 goal to bring safe water to more Rwandan families in need! Through recycling, coin collection, another generous donation from Somamg Foundation and the efforts of our amazing student volunteers, 20 more families will have taps at their homes. This project was funded in record time due to the efforts of Matthew Limb who spearheaded this effort. Thank you for your hard work! We will keep you updated as the project progresses.  Watch the linked video to hear how much these projects mean to the Rwandan families.

Recycling Program Milestone – $10K Donated to Safe Water Builds!
We are so proud of our youth advisory board members Jack Dennis and Grace for the recycling program efforts they began at St. John’s Episcopal School so many years ago. This year, their combined efforts have hit the $10,000 mark in recycling fund donations. This has directly helped to improve countless lives. To the students who use our receptacles, St. John’s  administrators and the gym owners that allow us to collect plastic and aluminum bottles and cans and donate the funds to water projects – Thank you! We could not do as much as we do without your support. We are sending this huge shout out to our dynamic duo who created and have kept this program going for the last nine years! The weekly sorting and hauling may not be glamorous, but your dedicated efforts have improved lives. Thank you for all you do and congratulations on hitting this incredible milestone.

20 Families Gifted with Safe Water in the Village of Kininya!
We are thrilled to share news of the completion of the Kininya water project. We are so happy for the families and so proud of our youth advisory board members, Matthew and Maddy Limb and Kevin and Danny Kwak for the fundraising efforts that directly supported this project in conjunction with Best Family Rwanda. We are also proud of all our volunteers whose recycling, and fundraising efforts contributed to making this happen. Despite the pandemic, the project was completed and brought 20 more families access to clean safe water from taps installed at their home! Children and their caregivers will no longer have to walk long distances with jerry cans just to get clean water that is costly – or dirty water that kills. THANK YOU!

So happy for clean water!

Life changing.

Tap at each home!

Thank you!


Gikondo Home Access Water Projects Completed!
Families in the Gikondo sector now have access to water at their homes! This is not only life changing for the families, but during this pandemic, it can be life saving to have clean water to wash hands. We are thankful for our youth advisory board members, volunteers and our supporters for making this happen. We look forward to helping more people on the next build.  THANK YOU!

Clean water saves lives!

Family tap

What a difference!

So happy!

Tolinapa Construction Complete
The construction of the water system in Tolinapa is complete! The pump house is built, the electric pump is installed, the distribution network is in, and the water taps are at each home ready for safe water to flow. The one piece left is the electric company installing the transformer for the electric pump. Unfortunately, the coronavirus has caused hook-up delays, but we are so close to a healthier community and clean water. Our youth advisory board members are disappointed they have not been able to visit the site in Nicaragua as a result of the pandemic, but cannot wait until the taps are turned on and we can post those photos to show you the good you are doing! Safe water is near. More than ever, clean water is needed – not only to drink and bathe – but to wash hands and keep the virus from spreading.

Building the taps

A tap for each home!

It takes a village!

Pump house


Students For Safe Water Board Members and Volunteers Raise Funds for Kininya Project!
Big thank you to Matthew and Maddy Limb and Kevin and Danny Kwak for spearheading efforts of the Kininya water project to provide water to 20 families in Rwanda! Not only are we proud and grateful, but so is our partner – Best Family Rwanda. Construction has begun and we cannot wait for these families to get the water they need to live healthier lives. God Bless your efforts!

Preparing for clean water!

Ready to lay pipe.

Matthew, Kevin, Maddy & Danny!

Thank you!


St. John’s  Recycling Program 2019 – Bigger & Better

Founded by Students for Safe Water Youth Advisory Board members Grace and Jack Dennis as elementary school students, the St. John’s Episcopal Church and School’s campus-wide aluminum and plastic recycling program is now going into its 8th year and helping to bring safe water to those in need. Since Grace left for the east coast to attend college, Jack has manned the bins alone every week –  emptying, sorting and transporting the bottles and cans to rePlanet redemption center and donated the funds to Students for Safe Water. Over $9,000.00 has been raised to date to help fund clean water wells, hygiene stations and other SFSW initiatives. Additionally, over 2000 pounds of plastic and aluminum waste has been kept out of our landfills and oceans. Thank you for your dedication and support!

Weekly sort

Recycle for safe water

Jack Dennis - our Recycle king

Thank you St. John's


Construction on Gikondo Home Access Water Projects is Underway!
Work began on the Gikondo water project to bring taps to the homes of the families in the community. We cannot wait for the safe water to flow!

Materials have arrived!

The build begins

Water is coming!

Pipe is laid!


Update: Tolinapa Build Progress

The trenches have been dug, the pipes have been laid and the Tolinapa community members have been working hard to construct the pump house (where the controls for the water system will be housed). Once all the controls are hooked up, a community operator will run the pump a set number of hours per day, twice a day, to fill the tank. The piped system will run from the tank, carrying the water to each home. This will change the health and lives of the community members. We are so excited for this project and so thankful to Paccar, individual donors and El Porvenir for helping us to help others! These families will no longer drink, bathe and cook with contaminated water. This year, a few of our youth advisory board members plan to visit Nicaragua and see this new build. As the project progresses we will keep you updated! Safe water is near.

Rebar laid!

Taking shape

Safe water coming soon

The pump house


SFSW Will Present at the 2020 Children’s Water Education Festival – March 25-26
The organizers of the 24th annual event, the largest of its kind in the United States, have asked SFSW to help engage, educate and inspire to innovate youth about the world’s water issues and the environment. Jack Dennis will be returning to teach and inspire the next generation to be stewards of the environment. Our first-time presenters this year will include Matthew Limb, Kevin Kwak, and Dara Santana. We can’t wait to participate and are honored at our inclusion in the event.

SFSW Club Represents at the SMCHS Club Fair! 

President Jack Dennis and club members Paige Brakke and Aldo Ruiz-Ortiz sign up over 100 members at the SFSW booth and raise awareness about the world water crisis. Way to grow your club! Anyone interested in starting a chapter at your school, email


SFSW – With Paccar Support – Assists Community of Tolinapa and Surrounding Villages – Goal is 2020 Completion 

Partnering with El Porvenir and Paccar, the Nicaraguan community of Tolinapa, Camoapa will soon benefit from a drilled well and water system.  Milagro Lily Jaime Sosa is  24-year-old woman who lives in a home with seven other adults and three young girls in Tolinapa, Camoapa.  The families in the community, like Milagro, have consumed polluted water their entire lives – drinking from an improvised well that they attempted to hand build on the banks of a contaminated river.  “For more than 20 years, we had to drink water from a well that the women from the community built at the edge of a river – a river where we washed clothes and bathed.”  In the summer, the well ran dry.  In search of a new water source, the community had to deal with contamination, both from animals and garbage in the river.  Milagro was concerned about the health of her family and community. This inspired her to take the initiative and seek out the assistance of El Porvenir – our partner NGO – in constructing a drilled well and water system.   Receiving the support of  Paccar, SFSW was able to commit to helping the hundreds of people of Tolinapa and the hundreds more in surrounding communities. As the project progresses we will keep you updated!


Hauling water

The build begins

Here we go!


Thank you St. John’s for Ingathering Donation – June 2019! RSM, CA 

The students at St. John’s have done it again!  They have helped us to help others through their generosity during chapel ingathering.  This time, they presented a check to Students For Safe Water for $830.13. Every person we have been able to help to date owes the administration and past and current students a huge thank you for their continued support.  Students For Safe Water started over 9 years ago because of the willingness of administrators and teachers to believe in student efforts. With this last donation,  we are nearing the amount needed to break ground on our biggest project -school construction in Madagascar, complete with water and sanitation.  Thank you seems so inadequate –but THANK YOU!

Another Successful Chipotle Dining Event  – Food for Change!
SMCHS’ SFSW Club, led by Grace and Jack Dennis, hosted a third dine in/out event in May 2019.  It was the second held at the RSM Chipotle. The food and generosity of Chipotle (they share 50% of the proceeds!) brought us back.  The simple act of  having a meal out helped to bring clean water to people in need. Thank you to all the students and friends of SFSW that came out to support our work.  Every little bit counts and helps make a difference in the lives of those living without!

2nd Chipotle Event!


Dine in or out!

Food for Change


SM SFSW Club Adds 98 Members – Going Strong! September 2018

Santa Margarita HS Club sign up nearly 100 new members. Thank  you to Grace and Jack Dennis for manning the table. More students means more support!

SM Club Rush

New members

Keep 'em signing

Sign up sheets!


Larger Community-Wide Nyarugunga Clean Water Project Completed, June 2018

Following the BFR-SFSW collaboration to bring 100 BFR families clean water, we received a request for a larger community-wide project. With funds received from SFSW, Students at St. John’s Episcopal in RSM and a matching donation from Somang foundation obtained by Youth Advisory Board Member, Maddy Limb, approximately 1,000 families located in the village now have access to water. The village is composed of vulnerable families, such as veterans with physical and mental disabilities and genocide survivors. Before this project was implemented, the villagers had to pay 150 RWFs for one jerrycan of water. This is a high price for vulnerable people with limited resources. For those who could not pay, the women and children were tasked with fetching unclean water far distances away. Many suffered stomach and skin issues because they were forced to drink and bathe in contaminated water. The community water project has changed life for thousands of men, women and children. One jerrycan of water now only costs 20 RWF, a price they can afford (130 RWF less than they previously paid after walking long distances). Its location in the community enables kids to attend school regularly as they now do not waste hours fetching water. The community is so grateful and wrote “Thank you (to the team) for this greater work of clean water. May Almighty God bless you.” We also thank all our supporters, every student, who thinks of others they may never meet. You are changing lives with every donation, however small. We have been asked to consider funding an additional community project in Kininya. We hope you will continue to support our efforts. We cannot do anything without students like you!

Ribbon cutting

Access to water

Some of the community

It's here!


Another Book to Benefit SFSW and Our Environment!