2018 ‘Ripple Award’ Honors Rotarian Devoted to Changing Lives with Safe Water

Preface by Eric Johnson, PWW’s 2018 Ripple Award recipient:

Have you ever read this quote by John Wesley? “Do all the good you can, by all the means you can, in all the ways you can, in all the places you can, at all the times you can, to all the people you can, as long as ever you can.”

If you hadn’t heard or read that quote before, I’m glad I got to share it with you. I’m glad I get to share with you how Pure Water for the World has helped me to live out this quote and do the “good” in this world, with the “means” of hands-on serving, in “ways” that have stretched and brought me to “places” like Honduras, at a “time” in my life when I can make the greatest impact to the teams I lead and the “people” I bring clean water to…I’ll do this as long as I “ever” can.

Press Release
Rutland, VT – February 27, 2019

Pure Water for the World, Inc. (PWW) is pleased to announce Eric Johnson, a Rotarian from the Wesley Chapel Rotary Club in Tampa, Florida, as the 2018 ‘Ripple Award’ recipient for his profound dedication to bringing sustainable safe water solutions to children and families living in underserved communities in rural Honduras.

Barry Poppel (left), Eric Johnson (center), Bob Mohr (right)

PWW board members, Bob Mohr and Barry Poppel, presented the award to Johnson at a club meeting last week, recognizing him for taking his service trip experience to the next level and making it a platform from which he has helped to launch a ripple of impact that has already spread wide enough to help thousands of children and their families.

Johnson was introduced to PWW in January of 2012 by fellow Rotarian and PWW Board Member, Barry Poppel. Poppel was speaking to Johnson’s club about the opportunity to travel to Honduras with PWW to help install water filters in family homes and build latrines at local schools.

“He inspired myself and a few other Rotary mates to take a week from our lives and travel with PWW to Honduras,” shares Johnson. “I returned home with the motivation to get more people involved. Since that time, more than 30 of our members have made this excursion to bring clean water to families in need.”

Johnson’s work with PWW over the past seven years has evolved from simply volunteering on trips to becoming a trip leader. He explains, “I have the fulfillment of seeing our teams take on a life experience they will never forget! This is what drives me! This is what motivates me! I have found that our faith in humanity and love for people of this world grows when we dive into their culture.”

Johnson has watched PWW evolve through the years as well. “From hiring top notch staff, to tackling cultural issues like menstrual hygiene education, to constantly improving tools and processes, PWW is always looking for the best solutions to increase productivity and impact, making sure that donor money is well spent,” Johnson says. “This is inspiring!”

“Eric was chosen as the ‘Ripple Award’ recipient based on his advocacy for PWW,” said Bob Mohr, PWW Board President. “He was impacted by his first experience in Honduras to the extent that he has become one of our most significant advocates. He went home and engaged his home club in the PWW effort. He has spent considerable time raising funds to support global grants. His trip leadership has resulted in the creation of advocates across the US and Canada. Eric’s experience, passion and commitment have been repeatedly translated into action.”

“Receiving the ‘Ripple Award’ is humbling,” Johnson says. “Although my name is engraved on the award, I owe this honor to the teams of friends and family that have given up weeks of their lives and sacrificed countless hours to bring clean water, sanitation, and hygiene education to the children and families in Honduras. Clean water changes everything. It lifts poverty, gives health, supports education, and brightens futures. Thank you to my friends and family that have given and given and given of themselves to make all this impact.”

Johnson is currently preparing for his 11th trip with PWW to Trojes, which will take place in April.

The “Ripple Award” was initiated in 2014 in honor of the ripple effect; small actions can create a tremendous impact. Previous “Ripple Award” honorees include: Doug Rupert, of New Hampshire, for his profound commitment to raising funds for safe water solutions in Haiti and Honduras; The Hoehl Family Foundation, of Vermont, for its tremendous support with bringing safe water solutions to 1,000 families in the urban slum of Cité Soleil, Haiti; Emma Owens, Ellie Hall, and Hannah Fisher, three Vermont high school students, for their initiative to raise funds to bring clean water filters to 1,070 underserved families in Haiti; Ken and Ruth Grabeau, of Nashua, New Hampshire, and Peter and Marion Abell, of Brattleboro, Vermont, for their unwavering commitment to safe water for children and families and their unceasing support of Pure Water for the World since its inception.

Click here to learn more about service trip opportunities.

Below is a video of the presentation of the ‘Ripple Award’ to Johnson.