Two years ago when Malaysians experienced water rationing it sparked an idea for a beauty brand.

“Every alternate day the water trucks would come to our area and along with my kids we had to chase the water trucks to collect water for cleaning and cooking,” Winnie Foong, brand general manager of Laneige Malaysia, recalls.

With this in mind Laneige Malaysia decided to act to bring water relief for people who have no access to clean water.

This is how the Laneige Waterful Sharing campaign, a global corporate social responsibility initiative aimed at providing the underprivileged with continuous supply of clean water, started locally.

Laneige, which means snow in French, is a South Korean beauty brand founded in 1994 in response to customers’ needs for hydration care, hence the water sign in every product.

“This year we are working with the Global Peace Foundation Malaysia (GPF Malaysia), an international non-profit organisation, to provide clean water to 500 orang asli living in two remote villages, Kampung Binjai in Pahang and Kampung Ulu Geruntum in Perak,” says Foong at the launch of the campaign recently.

“With funds raised through the campaign we hope to install two water filtration systems to provide clean filtered water for the villagers to drink, cook and wash.”

The Laneige limited edition water bottle, which comes with a sock with three designs, will be sold at RM10 with any purchase from the Laneige Water Bank series, or at RM40 without purchase. Photo: Laneige

The Laneige limited edition water bottle, which comes with a sock with three designs, will be sold at RM10 with any purchase from the Laneige Water Bank series, or at RM40 without purchase. Photo: Laneige

Foong says they are hoping to raise RM80,000 through the sale of the limited edition water bottle at only RM10 with any purchase from the Laneige Water Bank series, or at RM40 without purchase.

“We are very happy to work with Laneige to make a difference and ensure that the comfort we enjoy is also enjoyed by others,” says YB Tan Sri Zaleha Ismail, the Chairman of Global Peace Foundation Malaysia.

“When I was Minister of Unity and Social Development the orang asli was under my portfolio. With over 700 kampungs in semenanjung (peninsular Malaysia) and sometimes only 15 families, it was hard to provide facilities to the smaller kampungs,” says Zaleha.

“They would bathe, swim and use water for various needs from the same water source, resulting in children getting sick.”

“GPF Malaysia director Nicholas Lee started Communities Unite for Purewater (CUP) and we set up a filter in one kampung, which was highly appreciated by the villagers,” she says.

“CUP is a community driven initiative led by GPF Malaysia and this year we are honoured to collaborate with Laneige. Their effort is highly commendable as it exemplifies good corporate citizenship,” says Dr Teh Su Thye, CEO of GPF Malaysia.

“When I visited a community in Sabah without pipe water and electricity, the village head boiled water, offering us drinks. The water was brownish and as we drank it tasted strange. Imagine that they drink this everyday,” he says.

The Gel Cream and Essence from the Laneige Water Bank series. Photo: Laneige

The Gel Cream and Essence from the Laneige Water Bank series. Photo: Laneige

For the Laneige Waterful Sharing Campaign 2016 initiative, GPF Malaysia identified Kampung Binjai and Kampung Ulu Geruntum, which do not have access to clean treated water.

“Kampung Binjai is less developed and organised, and without a village head. The pond where they bathe is drying up and a small well has also dried up, so they are very worried.”

According to Dr Teh, among the problems include children who are not vaccinated and are exposed to disease, communities being displaced by logging activities, no running water and water catchments becoming muddy and contaminated by animals.

“They are hoping for a water filtration system so that they needn’t use cloth to filter out water.”

Dr Teh explains that the water filtration system created by local company RiViva is a non-electric system that includes a unique backwash feature and contains microfiltration as well as ultrafiltration membranes.

“The pore of the membrane is so small that it filters off bacteria and viruses. It has a siphon backwash which doesn’t require manpower to backwash and is transparent so they can see if it’s functioning.”

“We were excited with this technology, which was piloted earlier in Kampung Ulu Geroh in Gopeng. We are starting work on the water filtration system at Kg Ulu Geruntum and Kg Binjai soon and by July we will be able to see the outcome of this effort,” Dr Teh says.

The Laneige Waterful Sharing Campaign 2016 runs until July 31 at Laneige counters and boutiques nationwide. For more information visit www.laneigewaterfulcampaign.com.my or www.facebook.com/laneigemalaysia.