WSSC Water Celebrates 25th Anniversary of The Water Fund

Employee-Originated Program Serves as Crucial Lifeline to Customers in Need of Assistance Paying Water/Sewer Bills

| News Release

OFFICE OF COMMUNICATIONS AND COMMUNITY RELATIONS

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Laurel, Md. – October 18, 2019 – In 1994, a dedicated group of WSSC Water employees formally established a fund to help customers struggling to pay their water and sewer bills. Funded through generous donations by WSSC Water customers, employees and community members, The Water Fund has provided more than $1.3 million in funding to nearly 4,000 Prince George’s and Montgomery County residents since its inception. The Water Fund, administered by The Salvation Army National Capital Area Command, provides up to $500 per year in financial assistance to qualifying customers.

In recognition of the 25th Anniversary of The Water Fund, WSSC Water will hold a series of outreach events and activities to raise awareness of the growing issue of water affordability and help increase donations to The Water Fund.

"So many of our customers are living paycheck to paycheck and The Water Fund serves as a crucial lifeline to help them when they need it most,” said WSSC Water General Manager and CEO Carla A. Reid. “Our mission is to make sure our customers always have access to safe, clean water and this fund helps ensure we deliver the essential. I am so proud of our employees, past and present, who went the extra mile to make The Water Fund a reality.”

“When customers turn on the tap and nothing happens, that’s a horrible feeling,” said Pearl D. Laufer, a retired WSSC Water employee who helped launch The Water Fund in 1994. “That’s why we started the fund – to help those in need and restore their sense of dignity and worth.”

WSSC Water will host the following events and outreach activities to commemorate the
25th anniversary of The Water Fund:

  • No Water, No Beer Bingo Night Fundraiser: To raise money for The Water Fund, and in connection with the national Imagine a Day Without Water, WSSC Water is hosting two bingo night fundraisers at Denizens Brewing Company. Both events take place from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. on Wednesday, October 23, at Denizens in Silver Spring and Thursday, October 24, at their location in Riverdale Park. For a suggested donation of $5 per card, patrons will play bingo and learn about the role WSSC Water plays in delivering this essential resource that many take for granted. All proceeds go directly to The Water Fund.
  • Blue Tie Ball Fundraiser: On Saturday, October 26, WSSC Water will host the second Blue Tie Ball at The Hotel at the University of Maryland to raise money for The Water Fund. This year’s event will honor the WSSC Water employees who created the fund. The event will also honor and recognize several local and national leaders who are Champions of Affordability, including: U.S. Senator Ben Cardin; Kelly Caplan, Washington Gas; Radhika Fox, US Water Alliance; and Katrina Metzler, National Energy and Utility Affordability Coalition. Collectively, these individuals have helped thousands of people through their leadership and commitment to social justice. All proceeds will go to The Water Fund. Last year, the event raised more than $78,000 for WSSC Water customers in need.
  • Beyond the Pipes History Book: A special way to give! History enthusiasts, educators, water champions, customers and the public will enjoy this coffee-table style history book commemorating WSSC Water’s Centennial year. This hard-cover keepsake includes a visual timeline including local history and never-before seen photos from the WSSC Water archive. All proceeds go to The Water Fund. Purchase your copy today!
  • Social Media and Employee Fundraising: Through the remainder of the year, WSSC Water’s Facebook (@WSSCWater) and Twitter (@WSSCWaterNews) platforms will highlight The Water Fund and encourage donations. This will include a series of “Tasty Videos” focusing on the impossibility of cooking almost every meal without water. The campaign will also include a special push around Giving Tuesday, which falls on Tuesday, December 3. Finally, WSSC Water employees will hold a series of fundraising events with all proceeds going to The Water Fund.

To donate to The Water Fund and sign up for WSSC Water’s RoundUp Program, which offers customers a convenient way to contribute to the fund while paying their water/sewer bills, click here. A link to all WSSC Water affordability programs can also be found on this page.

WSSC Water is the proud provider of safe, seamless and satisfying water services, making the essential possible every day.

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