Friday, February 6, 2009

I Work for The Groundwater Foundation

I Work for The Groundwater Foundation
by Jamie Oltman, Program Manager

While in college I was often asked, “What’s your major?” I would respond “Environmental Studies.” Then I would proudly add, “I want to help save the world!”

Nine years later… The question has changed, from, “What’s your major?” to “What do you do?” Today my response is, “I work for The Groundwater Foundation.” Then I pause.

I pause to see if this person who has inquired about my work might know about The Groundwater Foundation or at least groundwater. Too often groundwater seems to be a foreign word in most vocabularies and I can imagine what they may be thinking… “An organization founded for the sake of ground…what?” I then explain, “We are a non-profit, environmental education organization.” This seems to bring some clarity to whoever asked the question.

When I Google searched “groundwater” I found two of the top three links, were pages from The Groundwater Foundation’s website! The first was a Wikipedia page on groundwater which list The Groundwater Foundation first on the External Links. The Groundwater Foundation also came up before the United State Geological Survey and The Environmental Protection Agency on the Google search. One would think based on the Google search and Wikipedia ranking, “I work for The Groundwater Foundation” should not cause quite the confusion it does. I don’t know how many people spend time Google searching “groundwater,” but if they did, I’m sure they would become more familiar with The Groundwater Foundation.

Most people are simply unfamiliar with the term groundwater. They don’t realize the role groundwater plays in our lives. Many people don’t realize the water they drink is most likely groundwater. They do not know that the majority of fresh water available for drinking is stored beneath our feet as groundwater. They have no idea that the food they eat was likely grown with groundwater. Regardless of how familiar we are with the term groundwater one thing is for certain we all depend on it. We may not realize where our water is coming from or how much of it we use but we all need to know we cannot live without it. To most it is just simply water. Whether it comes from the ground, stream, lake, or river it is the resource that we need to survive, the resource that connects us all.

“I work for The Groundwater Foundation. A nonprofit, environmental education organization.” I pause. I silently remind myself of that goal I use to so proudly proclaim, “I want to help save the world…I work for The Groundwater Foundation.”

“Never doubt that a small group of committed people can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.” – Margaret Mead

Is groundwater a term you use a lot? How much do you know about groundwater? Perform your own “groundwater” internet search and share your new knowledge and discoveries with me on our blog!
Remember if you search through Goodsearch,, and enter The Groundwater Foundation as the organization you wish to support each search will raise one cent for The Groundwater Foundation!

1 comment:

Unknown said...


I am from Hyderabad, India, one of the rapid developing country with equally rapid declining ground water. Day before yesterday I woke up to an alert by UNO regarding decline in grounwater table in India to such an extentby 2040 that there might be extinct of life in certain areas of our country. We faced nearly a similar situation last year when there was a drought. I was searching over the net since then about various methods to raise the groundwater table, of which rainwater harvesting is one.

I having been thinking of taking my friends help to start off rainwater harvesting in my locality, though I am not sure of how it might work out.

Just saw your blog and was really fascinated about it.