Mr. Rooter Plumbing in Haiti to help with cleaner water

PORT-AU-PRINCE, HAITI — Mr. Rooter Plumbing, with the help of 3M Clean Water Solutions, is making cleaner, fresher water a reality for Haitian earthquake victims.

During the weeklong trip, the group will teach women in Haiti how to test, bag and sell water. Moreover, the companies hope selling water can become a trade for Haitian women.

“We want to give Haitian women the opportunity to have a business that stretches past the rebuilding efforts,” said Mary Kennedy Thompson, president of Mr. Rooter Corp. “While we want to give them something sustainable, we also want to make sure they have clean water to drink now.”

Thompson said Mr. Rooter Plumbing could not do this without 3M Clean Water Solutions and its engineer Satish Chamyvelumani, who is also on the trip. He brought bags and test kits his company is donating to make this venture possible.

"We are excited to send a 3M Purification Inc. engineer Satish Chamyvelumani, who is part of a 3M technical team that is committed to developing and providing sustainable, affordable solutions to address water quality for regions like Haiti,” said Veena Lakkundi, business leader at 3M Clean Water Solutions.

Once they complete this project, Thompson and Derek Moreland, co-owner of the Mr. Rooter franchise in Toronto, will head to a town north of Port-au-Prince. They will scope out the town’s plumbing challenges.

This “fact finding mission” — as Moreland calls it — is important. On a future trip, a group of Mr. Rooter Plumbing franchisees from across Canada and the United States will lay pipe for the town.

Moreland made the pledge to help Haitians during a leadership meeting in January, as he talked with fellow Mr. Rooter franchisees. He had just heard that some Haitian kids were walking six kilometers for water, and they carried it back in old paint cans.

“We are so lucky to have clean, fresh water — both hot and cold — at our fingertips,” Moreland said. “We really do take it for granted, and we have an opportunity to help people who are really in need.”

Established in 1970, Mr. Rooter is an all-franchised, full-service plumbing and drain cleaning company with approximately 300 franchises worldwide.