News Details

Students Help WVWD Customers Save Water with Project Bright

August 9, 2023

According to a recent study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association in May, kids and teens who volunteer in their communities are more likely to improve their well-being and self-respect and less likely to suffer from anxiety.

For proof, you don’t have to look further than the Walnut Valley Water District (WVWD) in eastern Los Angeles County, where students at Suzanne Middle School and Walnut High School are going door-to-door to help residents install user-friendly water conservation technology.

It’s all part of Project Bright, the District’s newly launched program to help residents conserve water, monitor for leaks and reduce their water bills while providing students and parents opportunities to make a positive difference in the community.

WVWD Director of External Affairs Lily Lopez said the idea for the program came from one of the parents, Daniel Hu, the president of the middle school’s Chinese American Parent Association (CAPA).

“Daniel, who we refer to as our ‘water ambassador, noticed a leak in one of his home’s bathrooms, resulting in a higher-than-normal water bill,” Lopez said. “He then went to the Rebates page on our website and took advantage of our partnership with Flume, a gadget priced at $65 after our rebate, that involves a water-meter sensor that sends a Wi-Fi signal to a smartphone app informing the user of water usage and any leaks.”

Lopez added that after purchasing the Flume system himself, swapping out his old inefficient appliances with newer water-efficient devices and watching his water usage drop in half, Hu was inspired to share his experience with other community members, particularly the non-English-speaking residents. That is when he proposed Project Bright to WVWD staff.

The program’s goals, she said, are two-fold: 1) provide the District’s service area – Diamond Bar and parts of Walnut, Industry, Pomona, West Covina and Rowland Heights – with an easy-to-use, cost-efficient way to save water and money, and 2) give students a hands-on approach to community service while introducing them to water district operations and job opportunities.

“Winter rains brought some drought relief, but water conservation must remain a way of life here in Southern California,” said WVWD General Manager Erik Hitchman. “Project Bright makes it easy for our customers to use water wisely.”

After a training session, the students register customers in the program, distribute flyers, install the Flume devices onto home water meters, and teach residents how to use the apps for iPhone and Android smartphones, Lopez said. She added that the students can continue in the program from middle through high school.

WVWD, Suzanne CAPA and other parent-teacher organizations agree with the Project Bright goals, and recent AMA studies that show teens benefit most by “learning to respect others, learning to be helpful and kind, learning to understand people who are different and learning to better understand citizenship. In addition, the youth who volunteer are more likely to develop leadership skills, improve their grades and graduate in greater numbers.”

For more information about Flume and WVWD rebates, visit