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July 12, 2018

IWSH teams up with DigDeep for Navajo Nation Community Plumbing Challenge


Washington, D.C. (July 11, 2018) — The Navajo Water Project, an initiative of the nonprofit organization DigDeep that was among the 2018 recipients of the U.S. Water Prize, will be the focus of IWSH’s 2018 international Community Plumbing Challenge from Oct. 22 to 26. The initiative’s goal is to help ensure that every American has clean, running water forever. The Navajo Water Project is hosted by the St. Bonaventure Indian Mission and School in Thoreau, a small town in Northwestern New Mexico.

This Navajo Nation CPC will provide households in the Baca-Prewitt area of the reservation with access to water and improved sanitation. A multi-disciplined team of skilled tradespeople will execute plumbing and construction projects to improve living conditions in approximately 10 households nominated by DigDeep. Inside homes, a range of bathroom and kitchen renovations will be carried out, including the installation of new basins, taps, toilets, water tanks, water pumps, and hot- and cold-water pipework. Meanwhile, efforts outdoors will address the installation of, and connection to, new wastewater systems.

“While we invest millions in water projects abroad, most Americans don’t know that millions of people right here in the United States still don’t have clean, running water,” said George McGraw, founder and executive director of DigDeep. “In 2016, I was invited to give a keynote presentation at IAPMO’s annual Education and Business Conference, hosted that year in Albuquerque, during which I explained DigDeep’s position as the only global water organization working here in the United States. So now, less than two years later, we are very excited to host this latest edition of the international Community Plumbing Challenge to further impact the ongoing Navajo Water Project.”

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Residents and vocational students will also be involved in the upcoming program, and the project will showcase how plumbing practices, products, specialized tools and expertise can be applied to positively impact public health in their community.

“As demonstrated in previous international editions, the CPC creates a unique opportunity for plumbing professionals to gain experience and to learn new skills by working directly with talented tradespeople and industry experts,” said Dan Daniels, Chair of the IWSH board of trustees. “We encourage our industry partners and stakeholders across the water, sanitation and hygiene sector to consider nominating their best and brightest talents to join this upcoming project, which has all the ingredients to be an experience of a lifetime for personal and professional development.”

IWSH is actively recruiting team members, sponsors, and partners for October’s Navajo Nation CPC. If you wish to be a sponsor, please click here. If you would like to participate in the Navajo Nation CPC, please click here. For more information about the event, visit the project website at or email



IWSH is uniquely positioned to maximize the standardization and implementation of water and sanitation services by combining a near century of technical expertise, promoting international codes, standards, and regulations across the industry. It works to create innovative strategies, partnerships, and in-country programs that will result in direct real-world impact through the enhancement of physical schools, facilities, and the upskilling of thousands of workers across the globe. The foundation’s vision goes beyond clean water and sanitation — it is to build the framework, work force, and supply chains to sustainably grow these services in every country.