NermineKhouzam Rubin

15 minutes
Featured Image: Inside Story - Inspiring Business Women to Watch Out in 2024 - NermineKhouzam Rubin

Ensuring safe drinking water in critical quarters

Working towards the welfare and benefit of humankind is a responsibility for us all. It is an unwritten law of nature that we should be paying heed to, because things cannot work out otherwise. The world is recognizing this fact at a quick pace and all top corporate organizations are making sustainability, CSR, and eco-friendliness as among their top work tenets.

There is scope for more, and when an entrepreneur uses her energy and resources to address the cause of benefit of humanity, it is a matter that calls for deep and heartfelt appreciation on behalf of everyone. We honor all entrepreneurs who work towards making the world a better place to live in for everyone.

In this article, we talk about NermineKhouzam Rubin, who is the founder and CEO of Water4Mercy, Inc., a USA non-profit 501(c)3 organization whose mission is “To Uphold Human Dignity by Eradicating Thirst, Hunger and Poverty” in Africa.

A personal connection to the cause

Rubin’s commitment to humanitarian causes is deeply ingrained in her upbringing and the values instilled in her by her family, she tells us. Witnessing the disparities in access to basic resources, especially clean water fueled a sense of responsibility within her to contribute to solutions that address these fundamental challenges. 

We must leverage the resources and privileges we’ve been fortunate to have for the betterment of those facing adversity. Water, being a source of life, became a focal point for her efforts, recognizing its profound impact on health, education, and overall community well-being.

The inception of Water4Mercy

Water4Mercy was born out of a desire to create an organization that goes beyond providing immediate relief. It was envisioned as a platform for sustainable solutions that empower communities to shape their destinies, Rubin tells us. The unique approach of combining water access with world-renowned agricultural innovation, coupled with education reflects her belief in comprehensive strategies for positive change and long-term impact.

The driving force that inspires Water4Mercy is the tangible impact it makes. This finds manifestation in the form of smiles on faces, the stories of transformation, and the communities empowered to chart their course, Rubin tells us. Every clean water source, every improved agricultural practice, and every educational opportunity represents a step towards a more equitable and just world, to uphold human dignity.

We must leverage the resources and privileges we’ve been fortunate to have for the betterment of those facing adversity.

Key Initiatives put forth by Water4Mercy

  1. Water Access Projects
    Since its inception in 2018, Water4Mercy has successfully brought fresh and clean water to 16 different villages in Africa through its partnership with Innovation: Africa. This monumental effort has already changed the lives of over 67,000 individuals on the continent, providing a fundamental resource for health and well-being.
  2. Agricultural Technology and Training
    Collaborating with CultivAid, Water4Mercy has been at the forefront of providing agricultural technology and training to more than 2,500 farmers. This not only enhances agricultural productivity but also promotes sustainable farming practices, ensuring long-term self-sustainability for the communities they serve.
  3. AITeC – Agricultural Innovation and Technology Center
    Agricultural Innovation and Technology Center, in partnership with CultivAid and Don Bosco Technical Institutes of Africa, is a beacon of progress. 
    AITeC serves as a platform for “Teaching Their Teachers to Teach,” offering capacity building for regional experts, students, and farmers. This center is a crucial bridge to sharing advanced agricultural knowledge and innovative technology, cultivating a new generation of experts for the future of food and nutritional security.

    Water4Mercy’s approach is innovative, Rubin tells us, for seamlessly combining water access with agricultural solutions and community engagement. This empowers communities in projects that are not only sustainable but also remotely monitored for 100% success. This unique strategy ensures that the solar-powered water sources established by Water4Mercy are resistant to breakdowns, vandalism, theft, and other challenges typically faced by water systems installed by many aid organizations.

NermineKhouzam Rubin’s vision for Water4Mercy

Rubin tells us that they envision a future where communities are empowered to achieve self-sustainability, where agriculture flourishes, and where education becomes a beacon of hope for generations to come.

1. Holistic Community Transformation
Water4Mercy is dedicated to implementing holistic solutions that extend beyond providing water access. They aim to foster comprehensive community transformation by integrating water projects with agricultural innovation and educational initiatives. This approach ensures that communities not only have the essential resources for survival but also the tools to thrive and prosper.

2. Self-Sustainability
The ultimate goal is to empower communities to become self-sustainable. Through their projects, Water4Mercy strives to equip individuals with the knowledge and skills needed to manage and maintain water sources, implement advanced agricultural practices, and foster a culture of continuous learning. This self-sufficiency ensures the longevity and impact of the organization’s interventions.

3. Innovative Partnerships
Water4Mercy envisions fostering enduring partnerships with local communities, governments, and innovative organizations. By leveraging the best innovation and technology, they aim to create a global network that shares knowledge, resources, and expertise to address the complex challenges faced by communities in need.

Water4Mercy is not just providing water, Rubin tells us. They are nurturing the seeds of transformation that will blossom into a future of prosperity for communities around the world.

Stories that inspire

There is no end to the number of stories that inspire that Water4Mercy has brought to us, Rubin tells us. In this section, we discuss a couple of them which Rubin shared with us.

Kilemi is a farmer, whose village grappled with water scarcity, severely affecting his crop yields. With the implementation of our solar-powered water system and drip irrigation, Kilemi not only gained reliable access to clean water but also embraced innovative agricultural techniques promoted by Water4Mercy.

Inspired by the concept of “eating the rainbow,” which emphasizes the nutritional value of a diverse range of crops, Kilemi diversified his crops to include a vibrant array of fruits and vegetables. The results were astounding—thanks to Water4Mercy’s innovative approach, Kilemi‘s crop yields increased two to five times compared to traditional methods.

In the words of Samwel Mastoo Mugosho, the Village Chief of Mazengo-Handali Village located in the Dodoma region of Tanzania: “We are so grateful for this big thing, clean water to drink and for farming! Your company’s invention (drip irrigation) has become a great help to us. Now we are being given education on agriculture, and we use the best modern system in cultivating fields and gardens to improve our livelihood. We, members of the Upendo Group, are very, very, very grateful to Water4Mercy. We promise to provide this knowledge to other people to expand the best agricultural system. Thank you very much for this. May God bless and protect you and increase your blessings in your life.”

This testimony reflects the far-reaching impact of Water4Mercy’s innovative approach, not only in elevating individual lives but also in empowering entire communities. Kilemi’s success story, coupled with the heartfelt gratitude expressed by the Village Chief, underscores the transformative power of clean water and sustainable agriculture.

This achievement is a testament to the groundbreaking strategies employed by Water4Mercy. Together, they are not just changing lives; they are cultivating a future where communities flourish.

Going digital to increase the outreach

NermineKhouzam Rubin’s YouTube blog provides a personal touch to Water4Mercy’s journey, and she aspires for every viewer to connect with a message of hope, resilience, and the transformative power of collective action. Through the videos, she aims to evoke emotions that inspire positive change and foster a sense of shared responsibility in making the world a better place.

1. Empathy and Connection
Rubin tells us that she hopes that viewers feel a deep sense of empathy and connection with the individuals and communities Water4Mercy serves. By sharing personal stories and experiences, they aim to bridge geographical and cultural gaps, fostering a shared humanity that transcends borders.

2. Inspiration and Hope
The journey of Water4Mercy is a testament to the power of hope and resilience. Rubin hopes viewers are inspired by the stories of individuals overcoming adversity, communities transforming, and the tangible impact of sustainable initiatives. Each video is a reminder that positive change is possible, no matter how daunting the challenges.

3. Collective Impact
Water4Mercy’s success is a result of collective effort. Rubin hopes viewers recognize the power of collective impact—how individuals, communities, and organizations coming together can create meaningful and lasting change. Every supporter is an integral part of their shared journey, she tells us.

4. Call to Action
Beyond emotions, Rubin hopes viewers are inspired to take action. Whether it’s through spreading awareness, contributing to our initiatives, or championing similar causes, she believes each viewer has the potential to be a catalyst for positive change.

5. Transparency and Accountability
Rubin tells us that their YouTube blog also aims to provide transparency and accountability. By showcasing the progress of their projects, sharing updates, and addressing challenges, Water4Mercy hopes to build trust and demonstrate their commitment to making a meaningful impact.

6. Celebration of Diversity
Through her videos, she aspires to celebrate the diversity of cultures, perspectives, and experiences. Water4Mercy’s journey is enriched by the unique contributions of each community, Rubin says, and she hopes viewers embrace and appreciate the beauty of this diversity.

Rubin specifies that ultimately, the overarching message is one of shared humanity and the belief that, together, we can create a world where everyone has access to clean water, sustainable agriculture, and education. Rubin invites you and others to join Water4Mercy in making a positive and life-changing impact.

Through the videos, she aims to evoke emotions that inspire positive change and foster a sense of shared responsibility in making the world a better place.

A specific blog that resonates with the essence of Water4Mercy

In this section, Rubin discusses a blog that closely resonates with the essence of Water4Mercy and why it’s particularly meaningful to her.

Deborah’s Story encapsulates the real-life journey of Deborah, a young girl whose dream of attending school became a reality due to Water4Mercy’s life-changing gift of clean water to her village. Deborah’s inspiring video can be viewed here https://youtu.be/tX281BlhDEY.

Moreover, Deborah’s remarkable journey is further immortalized in the recently published book, “The Most Wonderful Rain,” co-written with Children’s author Susan Bellavance. This book beautifully captures Deborah’s story and is available for order on Amazon. https://www.amazon.com/s?k=9798886449594.

The narrative highlights Deborah’s determination to pursue her education despite facing challenges related to water scarcity. It explores how the intervention of Water4Mercy brought a transformative impact on Deborah’s life and her entire community. The clean water provided not only improved health and well-being but also created an environment where dreams could flourish.

Deborah’s Story holds a special place as it embodies the core mission of Water4Mercy—bringing about positive change in the lives of individuals like Deborah. It is a celebration of dreams coming true, resilience triumphing over challenges and the profound impact of providing access to clean water. Stories like Deborah’s inspire us all.

Encouraging community participation

Rubin tells us how individuals or communities get involved and support the vision of Water4Mercy.

1. Financial Support

  • Donations
    Donations including financial contributions, big and small play a crucial role in funding Water4Mercy projects. One-time and recurring donors sustain their efforts over the long term.
  • Sponsorship of specific projects or initiatives
    Your sponsorship can directly impact a community’s access to water, agricultural training, or educational resources.

2. Volunteer Engagement for Local Community Outreach 

This helps raise awareness in multiple local communities about the importance of clean water and sustainable development. This includes but is not limited to organizing events, workshops, or fundraisers to engage others in supporting Water4Mercy.

3. Social Media Advocacy to Spread the Word

‘Follow us’ on social media and share Water4Mercy’s updates, success stories, and campaigns to help amplify the message and let it reach a broader audience, potentially garnering more support for the cause. Create awareness by utilizing an online presence to educate others about the water crisis and the transformative work being done by Water4Mercy to encourage others to join the cause.

4. Fundraising Initiatives

  • Host Fundraising Events 

Organize events, such as charity walks, marathons, or galas, to raise funds for Water4Mercy and to engage more communities in fun and meaningful ways to contribute to the cause.

5. Educational Initiatives including School Partnerships 

Integrate educational programs about water conservation, agriculture, and global impact development and social justice to inspire the younger generation to become advocates for positive change and impactful philanthropy.

Water4Mercy: Future goals and aspirations

NermineKhouzam Rubin talks about the upcoming projects or goals that Water4Mercy is excited about, and how she sees the organization evolving in the future. 

Regarding water projects, Water4Mercy has been collecting support for Ausia Village, located in the remote region of Kondoa, Tanzania with a population of 3,021 and an Open Well as their current water source. They’ve been facing formidable challenges due to limited access to contaminated water sources, leading to the widespread prevalence of waterborne illnesses such as typhoid and dysentery.

Water4Mercy is intent on alleviating the hardships faced by this community and positively transforming their livelihoods. Last month, the Water4Mercy team had the privilege of visiting Ausia to witness firsthand the pressing need for clean water to address their water crisis and also extend support for 6 additional agriculture projects.

Additionally, Damai Village has a population of 4,443 community members, all reliant on contaminated water sources. This community has been grappling with alarming rates of waterborne illnesses, creating a significant health burden. Due to the absence of established water infrastructure, villagers resorted to excavating shallow wells along a nearby riverbed. The successful drilling at Damai Village is yielding 6.67 liters of water every second! The community members are overjoyed, and Water4Mercy are profoundly grateful to transform this village.

Rubin tells us that following their protocols, water samples are collected and sent to the laboratory for testing to confirm that the water is safe and fit for human consumption. The borehole has been sealed to prevent contamination and their water and civil engineers will now commence the water system design which involves identifying the optimum location for the tower and water distribution points throughout the village.

This marks a very exciting stage of the project, and Water4Mercy looks forward to witnessing the positive impact it will have on the lives of the Damai Village community.

We must leverage the resources and privileges we’ve been fortunate to have for the betterment of those facing adversity.

Water4Mercy is planning

1. Expansion of Water Access Projects
The organization will extend its water access projects to new communities facing critical water scarcity.

2. AITeC: Agricultural Innovation and Technology Centers
Building on the success of our agricultural initiatives, Water4Mercy aims to establish multiple AITeCs to serve as centers of excellence, providing advanced training, resources, and support to communities interested in adopting innovative agricultural practices for sustainable development.

3. Educational Empowerment Initiatives
Water4Mercy’s commitment to education remains strong, and they aspire to launch new educational empowerment initiatives. This includes expanding scholarship programs and fostering partnerships to enhance educational and knowledge transfer opportunities for children and adults alike.

4. Technological Integration for Monitoring and Evaluation:
Embracing technology, Water4Mercy plans to integrate advanced monitoring and evaluation systems for their projects. This will enhance their ability to track impact metrics, gather real-time data, and ensure the long-term sustainability of their interventions.

5. Collaborative Research and Development
Water4Mercy is excited about forging partnerships with research institutions and organizations to engage in collaborative research and development projects. This will enable the organization to stay at the forefront of innovative solutions, leveraging cutting-edge technology and methodologies for sustainable impact.  They are currently working with the University of Maryland and are putting on this symposium in January 2024. Here is a link for registrations: https://globalfewture.umd.edu/events/inaugural-global-fewture-alliance-annual-symposium

6. Community-Led Initiatives
Empowering communities to take the lead in project planning and implementation is a key focus. Water4Mercy aims to strengthen community-led initiatives, ensuring that their interventions align with the unique needs, aspirations, and cultural contexts of the communities they serve.

7. Global Advocacy and Partnerships
Water4Mercy envisions a future where clean water, sustainable agriculture, and education are accessible to all. To further this vision, they plan to engage in global advocacy efforts, fostering partnerships with like-minded organizations, governments, and influencers to amplify their impact on a larger scale.

8. Sustainable Funding Models
Exploring innovative and sustainable funding models is integral to Water4Mercy’s future goals and building capacity. They aim to diversify funding sources, strengthen partnerships with philanthropic entities, and engage in social entrepreneurship initiatives to ensure long-term financial stability.

Rubin says that as they look ahead, these goals represent their unwavering commitment to creating a world where communities thrive, individuals flourish, and the transformative power of clean water, sustainable agriculture, and education reaches every corner of the globe and by working together we can easily achieve these milestones.

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