Assam, India

Partners: Numi Organic Tea (Numi Foundation), Chamong Tea Company, and local NGO partners Purva Bharati Educational Trust (PBET) and Social Action for Appropriate Transformation and Advancement in Rural Areas (SATRA)

Goal: Ensure safe drinking water to the Tonganagaon tea community in Assam State through water, sanitation, and hygiene training, infrastructure improvement, and community capacity building. Tonganagaon is the largest organic, Fair Trade tea community in India and Numi Organic Tea’s largest supplier of organic black tea.

Projected Impact: 6,500 people in 12 villages of Tonganagaon access clean water and thereby eliminate water-borne illnesses, improve nutrition, strengthen livelihoods, and improve children’s school attendance and learning.

Launch date: Q2, 2016

At a Glance

As of 2012, 40% of all government schools in India lacked a functioning common toilet and another 40% lacked a separate toilet for girls.*


The Census-2011 report on water and sanitation says that out of the surveyed households, only 43.5% in India have tap water, 11% have wells, 42% have hand pump/tube wells, and 3.5% have other sources of drinking water.*


Nearly 76 million people in India have no access to a safe water supply.*



The Need

Assam, India is famous for its high quality black tea and home to Numi’s largest supplier. Yet Assam is one of India’s poorest states, in terms of access to safe drinking water. Fewer than 1 in 15 households have access to tap water. Many women and children walk up to 3 hours per day to collect and carry water for their families, facing security risks, poor health, and barriers to productive livelihoods.



The Project

This work will ensure community-driven, sustainable water solutions for all Tonganagaon residents. Our team will implement the following water, sanitation, and hygiene solutions:

  1. Improve Infrastructure. Reduce contamination of the 900 existing wells by ensuring proper drainage and upgrading hand pumps and other hardware.
  2. Ensure Treatment. Help the community learn how to boil and filter water to minimize bacterial contamination and iron, especially during the monsoon season.
  3. Safe Storage. Support community members to safely handle and transport water once it is treated so it does not become re-contaminated.
  4. Upgrade Latrines. Provide guidance to Chamong Tea Company, who will be improving existing latrines and constructing 900 new facilities over the next 3 years.
  5. Engage the Community. Implement a training program that supports the community’s adoption of good practices in water management, sanitation, and hygiene.


The Plan

Thanks to the visionary leadership of our partners on the ground, Numi Organic Tea and Chamong Tea Company, we have conducted an assessment and established a baseline of living conditions and water infrastructure at Tonganagaon. The next phase of implementation entails working with one model village to establish tools and techniques to be scaled to all 12 villages.

Join Us

We seek a group of visionary supporters to join us at the ground level as members of our Seeds of H2OPE Founders Circle—a group of leaders who step forward to catapult this timely project into action. Thanks to Numi Organic Tea and Chamong Tea Company, we have already raised the funding needed to complete the first phase of the project.  We are now raising $80,000 to complete the final phase of the project. We invite you to join our Founders Circle by contributing at least $1,500 to the project. One $25,000 patron will be invited to travel with us to Assam to experience the work firsthand!


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