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Say Hello to our 2016 Summer Interns

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Every season we get the pleasure of working with a new batch of intelligent and hungry young world-changers. It’s one of the best parts of being at charity: water.

This summer’s group is no exception.

Say hello to 21 (has to be a record!!!) hardworking, happy, and very hirable summer interns…


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Bryn Melanson
School: UNC Chapel Hill
Hometown: Boston, MA
Team: Key Relationships

Why did you want to intern at charity: water?
I came across a video of Scott speaking and fell in love with the concept of reinventing charity and his passion for bringing clean water to people in need.

What does a typical day in the office look like for you?
I get to research current and potential donors, contribute to excel sheets and help Maria with anything she may need around the office.

What’s your favorite part of interning at charity: water?
The people! Everyone is so welcoming and passionate about their work that it creates a very friendly and creative environment.

What goes on in your life outside of charity: water?
I am on the rowing team at UNC, I am very passionate about music and I am a huge foodie! (so New York is the perfect place to be)

What is your favorite place to hangout in New York?
I love the High Line, although it has gotten quite busy over the past few years, it is the best place to go and explore and find amazing new food options in Chelsea Market.

Where do you want to be in 15 years?
I have no idea! I just want to be passionate about my job and where I work. I would like to be working in some sort of strategic business position.

Share a fun fact with us!
I am always trying to find the best new artist on Soundcloud or Spotify and come up with playlists that all of my friends will enjoy.

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Sohana Islam
School: NYU
Hometown: Plano, TX
Team: Production

Why did you want to intern at charity: water?
I was very passionate about the mission and how the single focus of providing clean water to millions of people can affect just about every other aspect of their lives for the better. I’ve also worked with much larger nonprofits in the past and wanted to get experience with a smaller office and an incredibly innovative team.  

What does a typical day in the office look like for you?
I have a lot of variability in my day to day activities because my tasks just depend on what events we have going on. I can have days where I’m tracking RSVP lists or I can have days where I’m working registration at an event or discussing our VR technology with prospective donors. Never a dull moment!

What’s your favorite part of interning at charity: water?
I love everything about this office. It has a very startup-esque feel to it. Every person that works here is so passionate about the mission and the environment is very collaborative. Everybody is committed to making a difference and encouraging each other to do their best. Work hard, play hard! I love getting to learn about every department and getting to know the backgrounds of different employees. Everyone is super friendly, just good vibes all around!

What goes on in your life outside of charity: water?
I love to sing, go museum/gallery-hopping, try out new restaurants, catch sunsets, drink an insane amount of chai lattes, and just hang out with my friends. And Netflix, definitely Netflix….

What is your favorite place to hangout in New York?
It’s so hard to pick just one! I love going to cool cafes, galleries, and parks. Grand Army Plaza by Prospect Park is one of my favorite views to just chill out to. I love walking around Meatpacking and ending up watching the sunset by the Hudson. I also love this Moroccan cafe in LES called Pause Cafe. It is my happy place.

Where do you want to be in 15 years?
I would love to be running my own nonprofit, or multiple. Hope to be married with kids and have many many cats. Main focus is lots of cats.

Share a fun fact with us!
I sing and do a lot of different voices.

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Steven Durr
School: Purdue University 
Hometown: Sheridan, IN
Team: Water Programs

Why did you want to intern at charity: water?
The organization’s drive for excellence while making a difference in the world really intrigued me and it was something I wanted to be a part of.

What does a typical day in the office look like for you?
Every day is different for me. I have various Water Programs tasks like reviewing pictures, cleaning up data, or researching potential travel information for our team.

What’s your favorite part of interning at charity: water?
This is hard to narrow down. The staff/interns are all great and are always nice and willing to help. The environment of striving for excellence in everything we do is also challenging but very rewarding. But my favorite thing is that work does not feel like work when the cause is much bigger than myself.

What goes on in your life outside of charity: water?
I’m just in New York for the summer, so I am trying to explore as much of the city as possible. I also enjoy watching/playing sports and hanging out with friends.

What is your favorite place to hangout in New York?
Central Park

Where do you want to be in 15 years?
No idea.

Share a fun fact with us!
When I was a kid, I wanted to grow up to be a cow.

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Lyra Cooper
School: Barnard College of Columbia University 
Hometown: Piedmont, CA
Team: Key Relationships

Why did you want to intern at charity: water?
Water is the key to life, yet 663 million people still lack access to this most basic necessity. This is crazy. I was attracted to charity: water because of its dual vision to provide water for communities and redefine what it means to be a transparent charity with its 100% Model. I have canvassed door-to-door in the past and have a firsthand understanding of why people often distrust nonprofits. Besides having a background in urban history and a fascination with public health and water, I am also extremely interested in empowering women and girls–a topic closely tied to WASH. By providing clean and safe water to communities, charity: water and its partners are transforming women’s lives with the power of time. Time to pursue a career, get an education, and relax. charity: water is making enormous strides to empower entire communities and regions around the world with the basic necessity of water, and I am so grateful to be a part of such an incredible nonprofit!

What does a typical day in the office look like for you?
I make myself a black chai tea at the coffee station, check my calendar, and work under the lovely and intelligent Egu Ramanathan on the Key Relationships Team. The exciting part of interning at charity: water is that every day is different. I have already worked on a host of different projects, from charity: water’s progress reports that will soon be sent out to our generous Water Program Sponsors, to analyzing and presenting feedback data conclusions from past reports to the team.

What’s your favorite part of interning at charity: water?
The people at charity: water make this internship experience priceless. Everyone, interns and staff, are always down to grab coffee, catch up, and learn more about what others are working on. I particularly appreciate my team and Egu, who has guided me through the nonprofit and taught me so much already.
What goes on in your life outside of charity: water?
I enjoy playing club ultimate frisbee with the Brooklyn Book Club, reading about America’s history of lead pollution and poisoning, checking out new noodle shops in Chinatown with friends, and taking long walks north towards McNally Jackson Bookstore Cafe after work.  

What is your favorite place to hangout in New York?
Lower East Side and coffee shops anywhere and everywhere.

Where do you want to be in 15 years?
Working in a public health capacity in either the public or private sector on one of America’s beautiful coasts (probably northern California).

Share a fun fact with us!
I backpacked across northern Spain last summer!

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Sophia Johnston
School: Providence College 
Hometown: New York, NY
Team: Water Programs

Why did you want to intern at charity: water?
I have known about charity: water since high school and I have always been so inspired by the work this organization does. Not only does charity: water have an amazing mission, but it also works in an extremely sustainable and innovative way.

What does a typical day in the office look like for you?
Everyday is a little different but I get to assist the Water Programs team on any and all tasks that they need help with. I get to participate in meetings where I learn about the different partners we work with and how charity: water carries out the work that they do.

What’s your favorite part of interning at charity: water?
My favorite part about interning at charity: water has been getting to meet all of the people that work here. I love meeting people who are passionate about what they do and are excited to go to work every day.

What goes on in your life outside of charity: water?
Outside of charity: water I love to go to the beach, walk around the city, hang out with my friends, and play with my dogs!

What is your favorite place to hangout in New York?
My favorite place to hangout in New York is Union Square!

Where do you want to be in 15 years?
In 15 years I want to be living in the city with a job that I love and have traveled to every continent.

Share a fun fact with us!
I went shark cage diving in South Africa!

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Hannah Brown
School: University of Birmingham, UK
Hometown: Alcester, England 
Team: Key Relationships UK

Why did you want to intern at charity: water?
I wanted to intern at charity: water after attending an event hosted by Scott. He is a truly inspirational speaker, and the story behind the founding of charity: water is incredible. I couldn’t believe all of the amazing impacts charity: water has made over the last 10 years, and wanted to get involved in their mission to bring clean and safe water to more people across the world. As a donor, the 100% model and the charity: water brand is what really stood out for me. You know that every dime is going to an amazing cause.

What does a typical day in the office look like for you?
I am helping out with the launch of charity: water in the UK, so a typical day for me is all things to do with setting up the UK. This can be anything from event planning in London to building the UK pipeline and reaching out to potential donors. There’s always something going on the office too, such as a brown bag or water cooler event so every day is different!

What’s your favorite part of interning at charity: water?
My favorite part is seeing the genuine passion for the charity: water mission that the team show every day, through everything that they do. Everyone is great to work with, and it’s an amazing culture to be in.

What goes on in your life outside of charity: water?
I work remotely as a Category Management consultant for a business in the UK. I also intern for the Children’s Cancer and Blood Foundation, they do some amazing groundbreaking research into cancer and also help take care of the kids at New York Presbyterian hematology & oncology clinic. Aside from work, I love exploring the city with my boyfriend and our tweenie dachshund!

What is your favorite place to hangout in New York?
Nothing beats strolling down the High Line, ending up in the beer garden and then into Chelsea Market for some great food. Central Park is also my favorite place for a break from beeping horns.

Where do you want to be in 15 years?
A happy place! I believe in taking each day as it comes, you never know what opportunities are around the corner. But hopefully I will be working back in the UK in the food industry, which I am really passionate about, and in a little home with a little family.

Share a fun fact with us!
I used to fence when I was younger and won a couple of medals for it. I wasn’t quite as good as Zorro though!

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Emma Zang-Schwartz
School: Columbia University, Mailman School of Public Health
Hometown: Paradise Valley, AZ
Team: Marketing

Why did you want to intern at charity: water?
I have known about charity: water since high school, and have always loved the work they were doing. I wanted a chance to help and get to be part of the team!

What does a typical day in the office look like for you?
Answering emails from awesome supporters, unpacking t-shirts and other cool products, making sure the jerry cans don’t fall on people when they open the closet.

What’s your favorite part of interning at charity: water?
I love getting to work with all of the amazing people. And the bean bags are pretty cool!

What goes on in your life outside of charity: water?
Baking lots of cookies and exploring New York City - mostly finding other yummy cookies

What is your favorite place to hangout in New York?
Chelsea Market
Where do you want to be in 15 years?
Working at my dream job - and maybe on a vacation to the moon

Share a fun fact with us!
I share a birthday with my grandpa - we are birthday buddies.

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William Lee
School: City College of New York
Hometown: New York, NY
Team: Finance

Why did you want to intern at charity: water?
I highly admire the unique culture of openness and kindness. I also loved the cause for increasing global access to clean water. We are making the world a better place!

What does a typical day in the office look like for you?
Lots of busy work with numbers, primary keeping track of staff expenses, depositing checks, organizing monthly financial information, data entry, and making sure that financial details are accurate and entered into the right accounts. Daily uses of Netsuite, Concur, Excel, and Maji are necessary to accomplish ongoing tasks.

What’s your favorite part of interning at charity: water?
I am working with a team of highly passionate, fun, and talented individuals!
What goes on in your life outside of charity: water?
I do a lot of biking for fun outside of work.

What is your favorite place to hangout in New York?
It depends on my mood. Autoshows and museums are interesting, but there are so many other places that I like to explore in the city!

Where do you want to be in 15 years?
I will go deeper into finance, but probably be exploring the world as well.

Share a fun fact with us!
I am a big fan of horror movies.

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Jacob Sheward
School: NYU School of Engineering 
Hometown: Columbus, MS
Team: IT

Why did you want to intern at charity: water?
To help fight the water crisis by providing support at the HQ and to gain experience outside of the classroom.

What does a typical day in the office look like for you?
Running around answering questions and problem solving.

What’s your favorite part of interning at charity: water?
The people and their dedication to the cause!

What goes on in your life outside of charity: water?
I also work as a receptionist at Great Jones Spa and live in Kew Gardens in Queens, NY. I love art, puppies, and exploring the city!

What is your favorite place to hangout in New York?
Washington Square Park!

Where do you want to be in 15 years?
Happy and rich.

Share a fun fact with us!
I can touch my tongue with my nose.

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Maeve Kennard
School: University of Southern California 
Hometown: Wilton, CT
Team: Water Programs

Why did you want to intern at charity: water?
I have had an interest in international work for as long as I can remember, but I never knew what exactly I wanted to do within that field. I have studied aspects of the water crisis through my coursework at school and was very interested in it, so I thought that interning for charity: water would be the perfect way to expose myself to one aspect international relations while also learning more about an extremely relevant world crisis.

What does a typical day in the office look like for you?
My days are usually spent helping the Water Programs team on any data related tasks they need help on with the occasional meeting here and there.

What’s your favorite part of interning at charity: water?
I would say my favorite part about interning for charity: water is the work environment. Everyone in the office comes from such different backgrounds, but they all have in common the desire to make a lasting impact through their work. This creates an environment of people who are really rooting for each other to succeed and for the organization to succeed.

What goes on in your life outside of charity: water?
On Monday and Friday I babysit for my former babysitter’s 2 year old son. On weekends, I try to spend as much time as I can outside, whether it be going to the beach or going on a hike!

What is your favorite place to hangout in New York?
Anywhere with good food!

Where do you want to be in 15 years?
Hopefully doing something I love in a really cool place

Share a fun fact with us!
My favorite food is anything with cheese

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Amy McDermott
School: NYU Stern School of Business and Wagner School of Public Policy
Hometown: Boston, MA
Team: Finance

Why did you want to intern at charity: water?
For my internship this summer, I was interested in gaining experience in international development and was excited by charity: water’s unique model and brand. As an MBA/MPA candidate, I am eager to support the finance team’s work of ensuring the organization runs efficiently and creates lasting impact.

What does a typical day in the office look like for you?
Every day is different! I have several long-term projects that I usually start my day with, then there’s often meetings with various team members or office-wide speakers. A lot of revenue and budget forecasting and analysis, which has been a great way to learn a lot about the organization. I enjoy that each day is different and new projects pop up throughout the week!

What’s your favorite part of interning at charity: water?
Tie for the people and the mission! I am already learning so much from other staff members and their unique backgrounds and skills. I also love coming to work everyday knowing that everyone is working tirelessly to bring clean and safe water to more people across the globe.

What goes on in your life outside of charity: water?
During the school year, I’m pursuing an MBA/MPA that keeps me pretty busy! I also am a fitness instructor at two studios here in the city, which I love. If I’m not at work or teaching, I’m always seeing friends/family, enjoying delicious food, baking, exploring the city, running or in search of new great coffee spots!

What is your favorite place to hangout in New York?
Washington Square Park

Where do you want to be in 15 years?
In 15 years, I hope to a leader of an innovative organization that works to eliminate poverty and better the lives of people across the globe. I hope to have a family (with at least 1 dog!), living back home in Boston, and traveling everywhere when I can!

Share a fun fact with us!
I love to play golf and still play competitively when I can!

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Katy Nelson
School: Columbia University 
Hometown: Charlottesville, VA
Team: Creative

Why did you want to intern at charity: water?
I’ve followed charity: water for a while and was always interested in volunteering or finding some way to help out. When I saw the internship listing it seemed like a great chance to get involved. I’m interested in working in graphic design and branding for nonprofits, so I’m excited to help the Creative team this summer.

What does a typical day in the office look like for you?
I check in with Garrett and Ryan in the morning and see what’s on the agenda for the day. It could be anything from designing icons and graphics for marketing materials to researching inspiration for new projects. I also get to sit in on Creative meetings where the designers pitch ideas to Scott and others.

What’s your favorite part of interning at charity: water?
The office environment. Everyone is extremely warm and friendly, and they’re all willing to take time out of their days to help you learn the ropes.

What goes on in your life outside of charity: water?
When I’m not at charity: water, I work at a yoga studio, and I also do other graphic design projects. Lately, I’ve been designing exhibition catalogs for a local arts non-profit. I also help run the Met College Group, a committee of undergraduate and graduate students that plans events at the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

What is your favorite place to hangout in New York?
Too many options. Hungarian Pastry Shop at 111th St. was always my favorite spot to spend time by Columbia. (I’ve accidentally spent entire days there….) In the summer, I love spending time by the water in Brooklyn Bridge Park or by the lake in Central Park–the rocks by W. 76th St. are my go-to reading spot. I also spend a lot of time at the Met. The Islamic wing is my favorite part of the museum, and I also love visiting the rooftop which has a different installation every summer.

Where do you want to be in 15 years?
I would love to be living in New York or California working as a graphic designer. But 15 years is too daunting to think about!

Share a fun fact with us!
I figure skated for ten years, and I still love to go skating just for fun when the outdoor rinks are open in the winter.

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Laila Khan
School: NYU
Hometown: Sacramento, CA
Team: Marketing

Why did you want to intern at charity: water?
I’ve been following charity: water for quite some time and have always loved the way they work and what they do. Everything from their mission to end the water crisis to the happy company culture made it pretty clear this is something I had to be apart of.

What does a typical day in the office look like for you?
A typical day is a mix of interacting with our AWESOME donors and keeping track of the wonderful campaigns charity: water is so lucky to have! But it switches up every so often which is definitely fun.

What’s your favorite part of interning at charity: water?
My favorite thing about interning at charity: water is that everyone is working toward a common goal of having a positive impact throughout the world by bringing clean water to those in need. And so far they’ve been pretty great at it which brings about this exciting and fun energy which is awesome to be a part of.

What goes on in your life outside of charity: water?
My life outside of charity: water is filled with books- I love to read! I also try to take advantage of the weather by being outside as much as possible. I’m constantly looking for fun coffee spots. I also love traveling and anything to do with food.

What is your favorite place to hangout in New York?
This is tough! I’m gonna cheat and say two: Washington Square Park and the Williamsburg waterfront.

Where do you want to be in 15 years?
In 15 years, I want to have a fulfilling career in the nonprofit sector- whether that be here, somewhere else or at my own organization, who knows! I just hope to be a part of something that contributes to the greater well being of others and the fact that it makes me happy would be the best bonus. I hope to be married and spreading that message on to my kids!

Share a fun fact with us!
When I was a kid, I was convinced I’d become an astronaut.

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John Manion
School: Wake Forest University 
Hometown: Weston, CT
Team: Finance

Why did you want to intern at charity: water?
I wanted to use my knowledge of finance and accounting to make more meaningful difference.

What does a typical day in the office look like for you?
Recording check deposits, recording cash flows in excel, updating data tables with the most up to date and current information.

What’s your favorite part of interning at charity: water?
The staff and positive atmosphere!

What goes on in your life outside of charity: water?
I love going to the beach and playing frisbee

What is your favorite place to hangout in New York?
The High Line or Central Park

Where do you want to be in 15 years?
That’s a great question that I do not know the answer to yet.

Share a fun fact with us!
Self-proclaimed smoothie enthusiast

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Ali Margolies
School: University of Delaware
Hometown: Garrison, NY
Team: Production

Why did you want to intern at charity: water?
After two years of teaching English abroad I finally figured out what I wanted to dedicate my life to and realized there was no better place to get started than charity: water, their reputation definitely precedes them. On top of that the opportunity to learn and grow here was evident and after Laura and I teared up during my interview I knew I needed to be around these incredibly passionate people.

What does a typical day in the office look like for you?
The cool part about interning here is that this question is the hardest to answer! But I’m typically either in meetings, working on my summer project and anything the production team needs help with, picking other interns brains about their departments, or creeping by the kitchen to see if there are any new snacks. This is the first time I’ve worked for a non-profit so I’m focused on learning as much as I can and challenging myself in the process.

What’s your favorite part of interning at charity: water?
My favorite part is that we, as interns, get to be involved in so many aspects of the organization and are treated like fellow, capable team members. It’s one thing to read about what c:w does and be inspired but it’s another to witness it and be a part of it first hand. There is also always so much going on and so many amazing people that it’s impossible not to have fun and learn at least 5 new things a day.

What goes on in your life outside of charity: water?
I do my best to fill my life with as many tacos, craft beers, travel blogs, picnics and live music shows as I can. You can also find me perfecting the art of “looking like I know where I’m going while totally reading a map”.

What is your favorite place to hangout in New York?
On the High Line, street meat in hand.

Where do you want to be in 15 years?
I picture myself an expat, living in Central or South America, still working to end the water crisis, focusing on public health and women’s rights. Fifteen years is hard to imagine but I know I’ll be fighting for human rights on an international scale, hopefully with a few more foreign languages in my pocket.

Share a fun fact with us!
Last year I went to the San Fermin festival in Spain, ran with the bulls, and made it into the ring carrying my rolled up New York Times just like my dad had done in the 70s.

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Shannon Wheeler
School: UCLA
Hometown: Kinnelon, NJ
Team: Volunteer Program

Why did you want to intern at charity: water?
During high school I was a volunteer at another non-profit, and the experience really shaped my decision to study international development. I wanted to intern at charity: water to help make the experiences of our volunteers as positive and impactful as possible!

What does a typical day in the office look like for you?
Every day looks different at charity: water! Aside from working on fun events like the Hackathon, I am usually sending and responding to volunteer emails, working on Timecounts or meeting with Anna!

What’s your favorite part of interning at charity: water?
I love being able to work with Anna! We are a two person team and it’s really awesome being able to be so closely involved with her projects.

What goes on in your life outside of charity: water?
Outside of charity: water, I love to read and explore New York City! If you have a book that you think I should read, definitely let me know. Recommendations are my favorite.

What is your favorite place to hangout in New York?
I love going to thrift stores in Brooklyn! My favorite is “Urban Jungle” in Bushwick.

Where do you want to be in 15 years?
When I’m 33, I’ll hopefully be working as a human rights lawyer, or in an international non-profit!

Share a fun fact with us!
I’m mildly allergic to the sun.

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Priyanka Patel
School: Rutgers University Honors College
Hometown: Bethlehem, PA
Team: Key Relationships

Why did you want to intern at charity: water?
The theme for my first year at the Honors College was centered around the Jerry Can and finding innovative ways to solve the world’s problems including the water problem. I was inspired by charity: water’s creative dedication to providing clean water to communities that need it, and I wanted to be a part of it!

What does a typical day in the office look like for you?
On a typical day in the office, I go to a couple of meetings, work on projects that involve researching donors, and get to know my fellow interns as well as the employees of charity: water.

What’s your favorite part of interning at charity: water?
My favorite part of interning at charity: water is the innovative vibe you get when you walk in. Everyone is super cool and friendly, and the atmosphere makes me enjoy every part of the work I do.

What goes on in your life outside of charity: water?
When I am not interning at charity: water, I am either working at Barnes and Noble, learning how to cook with my mom, or hanging out with friends and family.

What is your favorite place to hangout in New York?
I love the West Village. Ever since I was a kid, the West Village was my favorite place to walk around, get some food, and relax.

Where do you want to be in 15 years?
In 15 years I want to have been practicing as a doctor (not sure which kind yet) for a few years and have already started a family in a nice suburban town outside of the city.

Share a fun fact with us!
I do four different styles of dance: bollywood, bhangra, bellydance, and hip-hop.

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Kara Patrovic
School: UNC Chapel Hill 
Hometown: Miller Place, NY
Team: Key Relationships

Why did you want to intern at charity: water?
I went to Bolivia when I was 15 to visit my sponsored child and when I was there I was brought to a community that had a single spigot of water for over 750 people that ran for an hour a day and during the dry season was not even turned on. A group of mothers and fathers from the community plead with me for a water system saying “Agua es Vida” or “Water is Life” and I became exposed first hand to the water crisis- it was crazy to me that at home it was such an inconvenience if there was no wifi, yet so many people around the world didn’t have access to something so basic as clean water. I came home and started a nonprofit to help implement this first water system and two years later I went back to Bolivia and was later able to see the water flowing. During this time period I had found out about charity: water and it’s amazing work. My first impression of charity: water was watching the Road that Changed Everything. I’ve probably watched it a good 20-30 times and it still manages to give me chills/make me tear up! I fell in love with everything charity: water did and stood for; the 100% model, grassroots fundraising, telling individual’s stories from the field, transparency with GPS coordinates and the monitoring of water systems with sensors to make sure that water continued to flow. This all being said, during my first year of college, when I saw there were openings for interns I jumped at the opportunity and prayed that I’d be able work here!

What does a typical day in the office look like for you?
A typical day starts out with me grabbing a cup of coffee, a glass of water and sitting at my desk. I work on research of different donors, impact reports, donor gifts and I’m going to be able to do my first grant soon which I’m super excited about!

What’s your favorite part of interning at charity: water?
My favorite part is definitely all the people that work here. Everyone is so passionate, enthusiastic and welcoming. It’s so cool to me that everyone comes from different backgrounds, states and even countries in the office but get along so well and all share a common bond- their passion for clean water. It’s so encouraging to be apart of such an upbeat, happy workspace.

What goes on in your life outside of charity: water?
Outside of charity: water you’ll see me at the beach, exploring the city, listening to music or playing soccer.

What is your favorite place to hangout in New York?
Williamsburg Waterfront at sunset!

Where do you want to be in 15 years?
I hope to have my masters in nonprofit or water resource management and be working at either an international nonprofit, a research/policy institute for water or be the founder/CEO of my own nonprofit or startup!

Share a fun fact with us!
When I was little I had a stuffed animal that I named baby no no and to this day, I have no idea how/why I named it that!

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Sristi Pradhan
School: NYU
Hometown: Kathmandu, Nepal
Team: Brand Partnerships

Why did you want to intern at charity: water?
I first heard about charity: water in my high school geography class when we were learning about water scarcity. I was amazed by its work in so many countries around the world and knew I wanted to be a part of the team. Also I’m originally from Nepal so growing up I definitely felt the impact of the water crisis. I learnt the value of access to having water early on.

What does a typical day in the office look like for you?
I’m working with the Brand Partnerships team so my main responsibilities include communicating with our corporate donors about their charity:water campaigns and fundraising initiatives, helping manage our campaigns and reporting details, and researching our existing and prospective corporate partners.

What’s your favorite part of interning at charity: water?
The people. Everyone is so creative and passionate about the work they do, it makes charity: water an inspiring workplace. Oh and the snacks in the kitchen and Monday breakfast meetings are pretty awesome too.

What goes on in your life outside of charity: water?
I love to travel! I’ve made it my life goal to live once on every continent, and I’ve lived in three so far so I’m halfway there. When I’m in New York, my favorite thing to do is walk because there’s always a new area or neighborhood to explore.

What is your favorite place to hangout in New York?
The High Line and the Conservatory Garden in Central Park

Where do you want to be in 15 years?
In 15 years I want to be working to make a social impact. I’m studying global public health and communications right now so I’d love to pursue a career at an NGO that would involve a combination of the two.

Share a fun fact with us!
I went to high school in Nairobi, Kenya!

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Christina Xiong
School: University Of Chicago - Booth 
Hometown: Fresh Meadows, NY
Team: Finance

Why did you want to intern at charity: water?
To contribute to amazing mission while learning how a global nonprofit is run from the ground up.

What does a typical day in the office look like for you?
Coffee, Checking Email/Calendar, Performing revenue/expense analyses on Water & Ops, Lunch, Working on ad-hoc projects with the Finance Team, Coffee

What’s your favorite part of interning at charity: water?
Passionate team members and a culture of giving

What goes on in your life outside of charity: water?
Concerts (Beyonce & Coldplay), U.S. Open, Broadway shows, Netflix, Kindle

What is your favorite place to hangout in New York?
The High Line

Where do you want to be in 15 years?
Zurich, Switzerland (or London or Paris)

Share a fun fact with us!
I was a U.S. Open ballperson!

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Joy Caroline Hicklin (JC)
School: University of South Carolina 
Hometown: Rock Hill, SC
Team: Office Operations

Why did you want to intern at charity: water?
I heard about charity: water my freshman year in college from a friend. From that point on, I was completely enthralled with the mission and culture of charity: water–from an onlooker’s perspective. Consistently inspired by the work I saw, I knew I wanted to apply!  

What does a typical day in the office look like for you?
Truthfully, there’s not really a typical day! One day I might be helping with internal events and another I might be rearranging the office. It truly depends on what the priority is for the day, but I’m always running around…inside and outside the office. It’s my job to assist Jordan, the office manager, with any and everything she needs.

What’s your favorite part of interning at charity: water?
I love learning so much about the different departments and the people who work in each of them. Generally, the attitude/culture is also really conducive to improvement and positivity, so I love that as well.  

What goes on in your life outside of charity: water?
Make me a Spotify playlist and I’ll love you forever; running is awful but necessary; anything on the water is a must; (good) books are important; cupcakes are divine; I mean I need food to live, so might as well make it good; awkward initial conversations are life.

What is your favorite place to hangout in New York?
Hmmm; I love the area near South Ferry, Williamsburg (Smorgasburg is a must), and Riverside Park on the Upper West Side.

Where do you want to be in 15 years?
Take the “1” off of that number and it might make it slightly more fathomable for me–but seriously I see myself moving around for a while and working in crisis management public relations, political science with a focus on development, or in a more hands-on role somewhere abroad. All I know is that I love people and I love to learn–so as long as those two criteria are met I’ll be thrilled.

Share a fun fact with us!
I love love love slam poetry; (google it if you’re not sure!) I’ve written and performed some, and on a Wednesday night in NYC, you might find me listening at the Bowery Poetry Club.

charity: water interns internship

Big Smiles Make a Big Difference

This year, our friends at Smile Generation launched their Give 100% campaign with a goal of raising $250,000 for clean water and reaching 100% participation from all 500+ of their offices around the country. Within only a month, they completely blew their goal out of the water and have already raised over $371,000!

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From decorating their offices with all things charity: water to hosting events like Yellow Sock Day and Yellow Bow Tie Day, there was no limit to their creativity as they came together to fundraise and support charity: water. They even got Red Nose Day ready with us! We couldn’t be more proud of all the Smile Generation offices across the nation for participating.

We are so grateful to have such generous partners like Smile Generation who continue to support us in our mission. Their passion and dedication to helping us end the water crisis is amazing and we wouldn’t be able to do our work without them. Thank you, SmileGen! We can’t wait to continue collaborating with your innovative team to help bring clean drinking water to people in need.

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charity: water Smile Generation

Today we hack

Each summer at charity: water, we take two days away from work and team up on fun and intensive projects to bring exciting ideas to life. It’s a time for our staff to step out of their comfort zones (and desk zones), and spend a couple days looking at things from a fresh perspective with teammates they don’t usually get to spend enough time with. It’s the perfect place to bring an idea to life that you’ve always wanted to try out, but found that it never really aligned with your day-to-day work. And it creates an environment where ideas and innovation can thrive, where failure is seen as equally important as success, and where we can practice creative thinking while collaborating together.

Our third annual Hackathon took place last week and the days were filled with lots of sticky notes, snack breaks, and most of all, a whole bunch of great ideas.

And although not all of these ideas will live on, here’s what we hacked up:

Office Tour: Kids Edition

We created a fun and engaging experience for kids in the office where they get to collect stamps on their very own Passport as they complete activities around the office like going on a Water Walk, watching VR, writing on our #nothingiscrazy wall, pumping the well and more, all to unlock donations for clean water. 

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charity: cast

To establish a new way to reach our audiences with a focus on stories from the field, one team created charity: water’s very own podcast, charity: cast. They outlined future topics and themes and even recorded and produced the pilot episode featuring Robin Cho, one of our water programs officers, who is currently in Mozambique!

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Power of 10 Timeline

With our 10th anniversary fast approaching, this Hackathon team created a timeline of charity: water’s biggest milestones over the past 10 years including stories, events, projects, campaigns, and trips to the field. As an added bonus, they also created “An Evolution of Scott’ timeline showcasing Scott’s biggest moments since the beginning of charity: water.

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Supporters Starter Pack

In an effort to support those who are getting the word out about charity: water, running campaigns, and donating, we created a Supporters Starter Pack both for kids and adults filled with goodies such as informational decks, reference sheets with facts and figures, inspirational videos, pictures, and activities to help them spread the charity: water story to their communities.

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Utilizing our Data Platform

As an organization that heavily relies on data, one team explored different ways we can use our data to make our work more productive and efficient. This included generating donor profile dashboards with insights into their cumulative giving and donating habits. 

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The Spring Mobile App

As we continue to work on making the experience for our monthly donors better, this Hackathon team brainstormed what it would look like to have a mobile app featuring a feed with updates from the field, a profile highlighting your personal impact, a map to see the status of projects in the field, an area to interact with other monthly donors in your community, and more.

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A Healthy, Green, and Productive Office

Healthy people make for a healthy team. One team came up with ways that we can promote each other’s health with office yoga, running or biking as a team, keeping our office green, and friendly weekly competitions with staff metrics to keep us going. They also brainstormed methods to make our team more productive including meditation and individual meeting caps.

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Unlocking Matching Funds

Major donors and brands love to give in a way that maximizes their impact. This Hackathon team brainstormed how we can use matching funds to get more subscriptions, activate campaigns, and increase referrals. They created a coupon page to catch potential donors before they abandon our website with matching incentives to stick around.

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The Collective: A Volunteer Club

We created a pilot brand ambassador program in five key cities that builds awareness, boosts our revenue streams, and creates new communities of volunteers and supporters across the country. This program is anchored in unlocking a series of badges tied to specific challenges that unlock key resources and perks.

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VR Landing Page

This Hackathon team designed and built a VR site that features the amazing work charity: water is doing with virtual reality. It shares not only our VR film “The Source,” but also behind the scenes photos and videos, how-it’s-done, write-ups, extras, and more.

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Team Rogue

And one team went a little rogue. They wanted to tackle the problem of centralizing all our online products via a unified supporter portal. Needless to say, they bit off a little more than they could hack. So instead, they decided to merge all the account settings and hard code a really simple logged in state for our supporters.

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And of course, documenting all the fun on Snapchat!

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(Photos courtesy of Sam Dornfest and Cubby Graham)

charity: water

We believe in birthdays

charity: water began almost ten years ago with a birthday party. Since then, it’s been one of the best ways for supporters (especially young ones) to help raise money for clean water.

Today, over 18,000 people have used their birthday to help serve others in need. And together they’ve raised enough to bring clean and safe drinking water to half a million people around the world.

This community is incredible, and we wanted to introduce some of them to you. Here are four young heroes who are currently sacrificing their birthday gifts to help bring clean water to families in need…

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Evelyn and Madison - Age 3

(Photo courtesy of Karin Heitzman)

Meet Evelyn and Madison. Two of the cutest three-year-olds we have the pleasure of knowing. These twins both pledged their 3rd golden birthday this year to help bring clean water to people around the world after their parents heard about charity: water on the Bill Simmons podcast.

We were blown away by all the personal stories. The different stories and statistics really pulled at our heart strings and it just happened to be that we listened to the podcast the week before the girls’ birthday.

Inspired by the lightbulb going off that they wanted to help build the character trait of generosity in their children at a young age and get them thinking about the future of serving together as a family and living for others, Evelyn and Madison’s parents talked to the girls about giving up their birthday for charity: water.

charity: water is the golden bullet of birthday presents. You give health, education, and time to families. There is not a day that goes by when I don’t think about how much water we use, and how I never worry about my children being sick from the water they drink.”

After flooding social media with cute pictures of the twins and spreading the message of these little girls desire to help others, the donations started pouring in. Many people who don’t even know the Wever family have been donating to the girls’ campaign and even going beyond the $6.

Evelyn and Madison have been thrilled to see the success of their campaign and even more thrilled to know that they’re helping change the lives of kids all around the world.

Momma gives us clean water, other mommas should have clean water to give to their kids too.


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Dylan - Age 8

Ever since he was 4, Dylan has chosen to support a charity on his birthday. Two years ago, he heard that professional skateboarder Tony Hawk pledged his birthday for charity: water and he was so inspired, he decided to pledge his birthday too.

This is Dylan’s second birthday campaign for charity: water and he’s already on a roll. He’s hosted lemonade and art stands to raise money and even hosted a birthday party where he asked for cash gifts instead of presents.

Thanks so much for your support, Dylan! We can’t wait to see the impact your birthday has on the lives of people all around the world!


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Sydney - Age 15

Sydney first heard about charity: water when she was 9 years old and a girl from her church started fundraising for the organization. A girl that we all have come to know and love over the years: Rachel Beckwith.

After hearing Rachel’s story, Sydney was inspired and knew that anyone, no matter what age they were, could make a difference.

When Sydney first started her campaign, she reached her fundraising goal of $450 within three hours! Since then, she has posted about her campaign on social media and even had a birthday party where she asked her friends to donate to her campaign instead of bringing her gifts.

So far Sydney has raised over $1,200 and we can’t wait to see what else she has in store.


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Gabriel - Age 6

Six-year-old Gabriel Torres first heard about charity: water when his mom showed him videos of families and kids from around the world working hard to gather water that wasn’t even clean.

“I never knew so many people didn’t have clean water,” he said. “When I saw how hard these families worked to get water from open wells that they could get hurt using, and how they walked for so long to get there just to bring home brown water to their children and families, I wanted to help.”

This is Gabriel’s first birthday campaign for charity: water and he’s already raised over 3 times his initial goal! He raised his first $130 in a matter of minutes just by talking to his dad’s friends about what he was planning on doing for his birthday. And for his birthday party, he even created his own Jerry Can to collect donations.

“Many people are very happy when they see how much I care. They think it’s pretty cool that I decided I didn’t want toys for my birthday or any gifts. Instead I wanted $6 to change lives and give people clean water that don’t have it today. I know that I have clean water and I never knew how lucky I was. I think everyone should be able to have clean water like we do.”

Keep up the awesome work, Gabriel!

charity: water fundraisers nothingiscrazy birthdays
Over the past decade we’ve met dads all over the world.This Father’s Day, we’ve curated a list of extra special gifts based on what Dads love. But you better hurry because they’re going fast…
The 100% Remote ControlJust like our 100% Model, this...

Over the past decade we’ve met dads all over the world.

This Father’s Day, we’ve curated a list of extra special gifts based on what Dads love. But you better hurry because they’re going fast…

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The 100% Remote Control

Just like our 100% Model, this universal remote never compromises. From TVs to garage doors, the 100% Remote Control works on 100% of electronic devices.

SOLD OUT

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Artisanal Fundraiser-Made Lemonade

Refreshing. Fresh squeezed. Handmade by a supporter who wants to change the world. Ci-trust us… this is the good stuff.

SOLD OUT

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Assorted “Plumbing Supplies”

Every tool your dad needs to save the day. Perfect for home sinks, apartment toilets, and even ventilated improved pit latrines.

SOLD OUT

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Clean Water for One Person

Make dad feel like a real hero by giving clean water in his honor. Every $30 can bring clean water to one person in need.



Just to be clear, we don’t actually sell universal remotes, plumbing supplies, or lemonade. But we did have fun pretending…

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Also- you really can give clean water in honor of your dad. And 100% of your gift really will fund water projects for people in need.

Happy Father’s Day, friends.

Father's Dad charity: water gifts for dad