~City’s Soda Tax Revenues Allocated to Reduce Health Consequences of Consuming Sugar-Sweetened Beverages and Eliminate Plastic Waste as Installation of 100 FloWater Refill Stations Nears Completion~
Today, Denver-based FloWater announces that the deployment of its new-tech FloWater Refill Stations at every school in the Oakland Unified School District (OUSD) is nearly complete. The initiative is funded with Alameda County Measure A funds and revenue from Oakland’s ‘soda tax,’ a measure passed in 2016 to fight childhood obesity and educate the public on the health risks of drinking soda. The integration of FloWater Refill Stations into Oakland schools is designed to get students to drink more water and reduce their consumption of sugary drinks.
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Schoolchildren, Mayor Libby Schaaf, Allendale Principal Desiree Miles, other officials and FloWater Co-founder and CEO Rich Razgaitis were on hand for a news conference and ribbon-cutting that took place at Allendale Elementary School on April 30 to celebrate that school’s new FloWater Refill Station.
With sugar-sweetened beverages linked to obesity, diabetes, tooth decay, and other health problems, 100 FloWater Refill Stations are being installed, one in every high school, middle school, elementary school, and alternative education location in Oakland. To date, 72 FloWater Refill Stations have been installed. Recent studies show that U.S. school children are under-hydrated, negatively impacting their ability to learn and their emotional well-being.
“Easy access to pure, great-tasting water will encourage our kids to drink more water. More water means better hydration, less reason to drink sugary beverages, and healthier children which, in turn, means a healthier Oakland community,” says John Sasaki, Director of Communications for OUSD. “This also means a significant reduction in disposable plastic bottle waste, which fits right into our larger goal of a more sustainable school system.”
Incubated in Silicon Valley, FloWater brings innovative technology to water purification and enhancement. Connecting to any potable water line, FloWater Refill Stations extract up to 99.9% of all contaminants and harsh chemicals, including lead and chromium 6, and delivers fast-flowing, purified and chilled water that has also been oxygenated, alkalized and revitalized with electrolytes and trace minerals for better hydration. A coconut carbon filter ‘finishes’ the water for a better taste.
According to FloWater CEO and Co-founder Rich Razgaitis, “Based on our surveys where FloWater Refill Stations are installed, we know that Oakland students will drink more water, be better hydrated and have more energy. This is a win-win for Oakland’s schoolchildren, their teachers and administrators and the planet.”
About the Oakland Unified School District
In California’s most diverse city, Oakland Unified School District (OUSD) is dedicated to creating a learning environment where “Every Student Thrives!” More than half of our students speak a non-English language at home. And each of our 86 schools is staffed with talented individuals uniting around a common set of values: Students First, Equity, Excellence, Integrity, Cultural Responsiveness and Joy. We are committed to preparing all students for college, career and community success.
To learn more about OUSD’s Full Service Community District focused on academic achievement while serving the whole child in safe schools, please visit OUSD.org and follow us @OUSDnews.
Incubated in Silicon Valley, FloWater has re-invented the ‘water cooler’ to wean US companies off the plastic water bottles they serve to their employees and customers. FloWater is already working with the likes of Google, Red Bull, prAna, Oneill, PlayStation, Specialized Bikes, Alaska Airlines, YMCA and the Oakland International Airport, as well as with thousands of hotels, gyms, schools, and concert venues in nearly 50 states on a new drinking water experience. Since its launch in 2013, FloWater has eliminated the need for more than 100-million plastic water bottles. FloWater recently secured $15 million in Series B investment to fuel its growth.