A Colorado-based nonprofit Can’d Aid and their partners Oskar Blues Brewery, Ball Corporation and Coyote Logistics sent 48,000 cans of water to the Food Bank of the Rockies and another 50,400 cans to the Navajo and Hopi COVID-19 relief initiative.
The nonprofit and their partners teamed up to fill the water need in rural and underserved communities in the southwest by sending over 98,000 cans of water. The Navajo Nation and Hopi Reservation are food deserts with only ten grocery stores on Navajo land to serve approximately 180,000 people and one grocery store on Hopi land to serve about 3,000 people.
“The communities that are especially susceptible at this time have a high number of people with underlying health issues caused by abandoned uranium mines,” says Jessica Stago in a press release, Director of Native America Economic Initiatives at the Grand Canyon Trust. “They live in very rural areas making it difficult to access healthcare and basic necessities and they rely on water resources that are used community-wide, increasing the risk of exposure. We are trying to deliver food and water to these families to reduce these risk factors and stop the spread of COVID-19.”
According to NPR, the reservation on the Navajo Nation is under strict shelter-in-place orders but thousands of people must regularly leave their houses for necessities, like water.
“We believe there’s never been a better time to practice and demonstrate empathy. Can’d Aid is adjusting to this new normal by finding impactful and authentic ways to do people-powered good and increase connection, even if it is virtual,” says Diana Ralston in the same press release, Can’d Aid Executive Director. “By remaining true to our roots during these unprecedented times, we are able to quickly and effectively aid those in need of basic life securities, while, at the same time, lessening the impact of single-use plastics on our already taxed environment.”
One truckload of canned water was delivered to the Food Bank of the Rockies last week. The other was delivered to the Navajo and Hopi communities Tuesday.