Culligan Cares: One Village Transformed

The Partnership with Culligan Cares and World Concern:

IMG_4857.jpgCulligan Cares has made a generous 3-year commitment to help transform the lives of the people of Soukhouma by underwriting a significant portion of World Concern’s WASH programs there. “WASH” stands for water, hygiene, and sanitation, and it’s a key to preventing the spread of disease and improving overall health for the village.

Access to clean water can come through digging deeper, cleaner wells or, in some places, helping install facilities to channel rainwater into underground or above-ground tanks. One day’s heavy rain can provide a village with weeks of clean water.

Hygiene and health education is one of the best ways to improve health. World Concern and Culligan Cares will help instill practices such as hand-washing, regular bathing, safe food preparation and proper trash disposal. These practices improve health and give villagers a sense of greater ownership and responsibility.

Better sanitation typically involves equipping villages with better latrines. Cleaner toileting facilities can help transform entire communities through improved health.

“We’re deeply grateful to Culligan for this fruitful partnership. Because of your generous and compassionate support, the lives of the people of Sukhuma will be permanently transformed.”
- Tony Bollen, World Concern Corporate Partnerships Officer

Where is Soukhouma and why are we there?

Soukhouma is a district in the Champasak Province of Southern Laos, containing several small villages. It is an isolated district located near the Thai border, plagued by severe poverty and very poor sanitation. Due to the very difficult economic and social conditions in Soukhouma, more than half of all children 12 to 18 do not attend school, but instead have to find some way to earn income to support themselves or their families.

Because the Thai border is so close and the region so impoverished, young people are being forced to cross illegally into Thailand for work. (The cost of legal entry is prohibitive.) Their status as illegals affords them no protection, and as a result these young Laotians become vulnerable to trafficking and abusive work practices.  Champasak province has the highest levels of migration in Laos.

The government of Laos has specifically invited World Concern to work in five of Soukhouma’s poorest villages and has shared a great deal of village data with World Concern, including identifying those communities which are closest to the Thai border and have no other non-governmental organization support.

What will be the result of our work in Soukhouma?

  • Improved access to safe water and better sanitation facilities

  • Better drainage to reduce breeding of disease-bearing mosquitoes

  • Improved health through primary care and improved sanitation

  • Better child health and reduced child mortality

  • Increased HIV screening, counselling and follow up

  • Improved sexual education to reduce sexually-transmitted disease

  • Prevention of unsafe migration and reduction in trafficking and drug abuse

Culligan Cares is committed to helping others. Our partnership with World Concern will provide the people of Soukhouma with the tools they need to live longer, healthier lives.

The Timeline for our work in Soukhouma:


  • Forming of Village Development Councils and youth clubs
  • Awareness training, village mapping, monthly meetings
  • Initiating vocational training
  • Identifying and initiating seed projects
  • Building capacity within the youth groups
  • Providing seed projects with financial and technical support
  • Measuring the results of village projects in three critical areas: WASH (water, sanitation, hygiene), nutrition, and income generation
  • Developing programs to prevent unsafe migration and trafficking.
  • Continuing Year 2 activities
  • Compiling lessons learned from seed projects
  • Mobilizing new groups as appropriate to multiply village villages
  • Preparing for the next phase of expansion to neighboring villages
  • Mobilizing young people to build awareness in neighboring villages that change is possible.