High School Board


A school year program – currently in Seattle, the Eastside (of Seattle) and Portland – for students in grades 9-12.



Applications for the 2017-18 school year are open. Spread the word!

Questions? Contact us.

SEATTLE: Applications closed for 2017-18.



– Attend quarterly board meetings per school year (approximately 2 hours each)

– Participate in outreach and advocacy opportunities as available (varies each year)

– Support the Carry5 Walk for Water as a volunteer and fundraiser


This school-year program – currently for students in Seattle, the Eastside (of Seattle) and Portland – empowers students to use their talents and networks to further the mission of Water1st. We provide students with the support and resources they need to be strong advocates, as well as the inspiration to become the next generation of global leaders.

Water1st youth board members meet quarterly for approximately 2 hours to engage in activities that, 1/educate students on the impact and challenges of the global water crisis, 2/ empower students to make a difference through advocacy training, 3/ support a new network of friendships based on a common interest of global equity. Additionally, students participate in outreach and advocacy opportunities in their communities as available.

Our curriculum exposes students to a wide variety of global development topics: public health, technology, economics, gender, fundraising, and our philosophy of community-led development.

Candidates are chosen based on interest in global issues as well as a commitment to advocacy through fundraising. Advocacy training includes public speaking, writing, designing social media campaigns, and more.

High School board members have the opportunity to apply to the Water1st Global Fellows Program, which includes an intensive field experience in our project communities in rural Honduras, January 12–20, 2018.


Fall sessions: We begin with an overview of Water1st projects in Mozambique, Ethiopia, Honduras and Bangladesh. Students analyze a community-led philosophy of development and learn how it results in effective and sustainable projects. They learn how a holistic approach that includes water, toilets, and hygiene promotion greatly reduces the spread of infectious disease. A deep understanding of the Water1st approach to development prepares students as water educators and advocates in their communities.

Winter sessions: Students are prepared to serve as advocates in various venues—Seattle Art Museum’s Teen Night Out; local youth conferences such as ACT; the Teen Action Fair at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation; schools; places of worship; and corporations. This period also includes a critical look at the landscape of water technologies vs. the Water1st priority of high quality piped water systems with water-sealed toilets.

Spring sessions: Students analyze the complexities of poverty and the resulting challenges in global development. During this period they hone their advocacy and fundraising skills by communicating their personal story of compassion via social media, newsprint, graphic design, speech writing, and other forms of expression. Together, they make a huge impact as they support the annual Carry5 Walk for Water as volunteers and fundraisers.

The combination of a deep understanding of the global water crisis and the inspiration to communicate the problem results in a group of super-advocates who are changing the world.

FUN FACTS: 2016-17

18 Seattle-area schools represented: 11 public and 7 private

Grades represented: 12 Freshman, 15 Sophomores, 7 Juniors, 6 Seniors

Lives directly impacted by the advocacy work of these amazing high school students: 1,150 people have access to clean water and toilets

School Clubs founded by our board members: 2

Students who traveled to project communities in rural Honduras: 9

Slices of pizza consumed at meetings: 350

New friendships and inside jokes: countless