CMMB Launches Clean Water Campaign for World Water Day, Inspired by College Students to #ACT4Water

The campaign calls on students and others to walk 5km — the approximate distance it takes women and children living in low-resource countries to collect water — and challenge friends and families on social media using the #ACT4Water hashtag.

NEW YORK, NEW YORK — Monday, March 8th, 2021

CMMB (Catholic Medical Mission Board) along with CMMB x Hunter College, American Medical Student Association at CUNY School of Medicine and the Thirst Project are collaborating to raise awareness about the importance of improving access to clean water in low-resource countries to commemorate World Water Day on Monday, March 22nd.

Walk 5km. Challenge 5 friends. Donate $5.

The #ACT4Water campaign calls on college students and others to walk 5km, the approximate distance it takes women and children living in low-resource countries around the world to collect water. The campaign encourages students to carry an extra weight — such as a backpack of textbooks — to simulate the experience of carrying a jerrycan with 5 gallons of water, weighing about 44 lbs.

Using the #ACT4Water hashtag on social media, CMMB asks participants to raise awareness about the global water crisis by challenging friends and family to walk 5km for clean water. Those interested can sign up at

“The lack of access to clean water and basic sanitation is one of the most troubling inequalities of our time,” said Mary Beth Powers, CMMB President and CEO. “One in three people globally do not have access to safe drinking water. Twenty-five percent of health facilities worldwide do not have a consistent source of clean water. Good health begins with clean water.”

“Access to clean water is a basic human right,” said Matthew Modine, activist and American actor known for his iconic roles in Full Metal Jacket and Stranger Things. Mathew Modine joins college students by taking the challenge himself to walk 5km for clean water. “Women and children in poor and rural communities are the most vulnerable and at risk. Unsafe water results in countless deaths — almost all of which are preventable.”

“CMMB is delighted to partner with college students and the Thirst Project to find new ways to make a difference,” said Mary Beth Powers.

“We believe in a world where everyone has access to clean water,” said Priya Singh, a pre-med student and President of CMMB x Hunter student chapter at Hunter College in New York organizing the campaign with fellow students. “Our goal is to think globally and act locally by raising awareness on college campuses across the country to support communities in need of clean water.”

Clean water and handwashing have become even more critical to slow the spread of COVID-19 and save lives. In 2020, CMMB expanded its clean water projects in local communities and health facilities and improved access to clean water for 261,811 people.

CMMB and Thirst Project will hold a joint online event on March 22nd to commemorate World Water Day that invites college students and others to learn about the global water crisis from a panel of global health experts.

For college students and others interested in joining the campaign, learn more at:

Please contact Luke Dougherty, Director of Communications, at for more information or questions.

About CMMB

CMMB (Catholic Medical Mission Board) provides long-term community-based medical, preventative, and development aid to women and children who are disproportionately affected by poverty. CMMB focuses on improving access to proper healthcare to the most vulnerable populations in targeted parts of Zambia, Kenya, South Sudan, Peru, and Haiti. CMMB utilizes three pathways to providing care; through the Children and Mothers Partnerships (CHAMPS) program model, the Medical Donations Program, and Volunteer program.

With over 100 years of experience, CMMB distributed nearly half a billion dollars worth of medicines and medical supplies to 31 countries last year alone. CMMB’s volunteer doctors, nurses and other healthcare professionals are paired with medicines and medical supplies in remote communities, providing access to care and building local capacity. CMMB’s CHAMPS program makes long-term commitments in communities, addressing and working to change the root causes that restrict women and children from living healthier lives.

Learn more at: