On May 21, Snyder Diamond was pleased to host a special event for Italian faucet manufacturer Fantini. Guests gathered on the patio at AOC to celebrate the start of Phase II of the “100 Fontane: Fantini for Africa” program, a humanitarian initiative that delivers clean water to the community of Masango, located in Burundi, Central Africa. The company’s first phase, the goal of building one hundred fountains, has been achieved—now it’s time to do even more. And we want to help. Our party highlighted not just what Fantini has done, but what they continue to do. Guests enjoyed tray-passed bites and a seated dinner, and learned more about the company through their book and a screening of a new documentary. Some lucky guests even went home with the Fantini faucets that have been at the heart of their life-saving mission.
Decades of civil war in Burundi left most of the region, especially Masango, in poverty. The area is vast and hilly, and children were often the ones sent to fetch water, walking for hours through difficult terrain, and making up to six trips per day. There was no time, no opportunity for education. As well, the water was often unhealthy, and we all know that a lack of clean drinking water leads to potentially deadly infections and prevents any chance of development.
Over the last two years, Fantini, along with monumental efforts from the Rotary Club, has developed 12 water sources, constructed more than 15 miles of aqueducts, and built 100 drinking fountains, with 30 more nearing completion. The fountains, now only about a 10-minute walk away, deliver safe water to some 25,000 people, and are looked after and maintained by individuals within the community. "The key goal of the project", explains Daniela Fantini, head of the 65-year old, family-run firm, "was to enable children to spend far less time fetching water and to spend that time on schooling instead, by way of a first step in laying the foundations for a better future.” But the work is by no means over. “There is plenty of scope for new projects aimed at consolidating and implementing the positive effects of ‘100 Fontane,’ and we are working on them!"
How, exactly, is Fantini able to do all of this? Through good design! All profits from the re-release of its iconic I Balocchi faucet line go directly to the cause. Created in 1978 by Davide Mercatali and Paolo Pedrizzetti, the design was was phased out in the mid-90s but remained an important part of the company’s history. For this new iteration, Fantini had Mercatali and Pedrizzetti give it a few updates. The designers crafted a more refined spout and gave it an adjustable flow that meets today’s standards. Originally most popular in blue, red, green and orange, the faucet is now available in an array of contemporary hues.
Will it be the perfect fit for one of your projects, and help continue the efforts of Fantini for Africa? We hope so.
Party photos by Stacie McChesney