Earth Today | Couples take on water conservation with JN Foundation
FOUR COUPLES, four sets of water-efficiency kits, three months, and hopefully, a whole lot of savings! That’s the premise of the JN Foundation’s latest campaign to reduce water usage in Jamaican households.
The campaign, launched this month, will see four influencer couples using the water-efficiency kits in their homes for three months as a means to conserve the valuable resource and reduce their bills.
The four couples: Basillia and Brian Cuff; Xaundre and Zhara-Marie Mohansingh; Sasha and Rory Ebanks; and Romaine and Elizabeth Virgo will install the kits in their homes and implement the tips from the JN Foundation’s Water Project Homeowners’ Guide to Water-use Efficiency, to monitor changes in their water bills over the period of the campaign. Each kit comprises a showerhead, aerators for the kitchen and bathroom sinks and a toilet leak detector.
For the Cuffs, this is an exciting endeavour, which they hope will help them to reduce their water bill while also teaching their children about water conversation.
“I’m excited about learning and spreading the knowledge surrounding water conservation. It is something we practise and emphasise in our home, especially with two children running around who know how to turn pipes on,” said Basillia.
The family, she said, now spends about $8,000 on their water bill each month.
“I honestly feel like this project will be eye-opening for many of us, and rewarding when the bills begin to reflect the reduction,” Basilia noted.
For Zhara Mohansingh, the JN Foundation’s water project is game changing.
“It’s not just practical, but helps with a mindset shift which is critical if we desire change. Cutting down on any bill is a good idea for my pocket and I’m excited to see how the practices will help us to stay under budget as we try to stay afloat in such harsh economic conditions,” she said.
Claudine Allen, general manager of the JN Foundation, said the main campaign goal is to encourage water adaptation measures and encourage efficient water usage across all sectors.
“Our hope is that the results of the programme will encourage more Jamaicans to adopt these water conservation strategies in their homes as a way of conserving on their water consumption and cutting down their water bills,” Allen said.
The initiative falls under Water Project Jamaica, which started in 2017 in collaboration with JN Bank, JN Foundation, the Climate Investment Funds, the Pilot Program for Climate Resilience, the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB), and IDB Lab.
“With the help of our influencer couples, we hope to reach more Jamaicans with this message of conservation,” Allen added.
Data show that a typical single-family home in Jamaica uses between 3,000 and 5,000 gallons of water per month, with about 10 per cent wasted. Water-saving devices and good conservation practices can reduce water consumption by as much as 30 per cent.
The JN Foundation, under its Water Project, has in the past implemented with success, similar water conservation initiatives in other households and institutions.
In 2021, for example, a rainwater harvesting system and water-efficiency devices were donated to the Wortley Home for Girls in Kingston, which saw the institution reducing its water bill by at least 50 per percent less than a year later. The donation comprised 12 water-efficiency kits and the rainwater harvesting system, including piping and guttering, as well as a tank donated by entertainer and The Jamaica National Group brand ambassador Agent Sasco.
Similarly, in 2018, several St Catherine residents, who received water-efficiency kits, reported significant reductions in their consumption and subsequent water bills.