Community Foundation of the Lowcountry Named 2017 Winner of HUD Secretary's AwardThe U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and the Council on Foundations (COF) today announced that Community Foundation of the Lowcountry is one of 10 winners of the 2017 HUD Secretary’s Award for Public-Philanthropic Partnerships. Click here to read more.





There’s a problem,and we can fix it.

Hundreds of households on Hilton Head Island are not yet connected to the public sewer system, relying instead on septic systems. Compromised by the high water table and dense underground root systems, some of these septic systems are producing an overflow of contaminated waste water that threatens the safety and beauty of our island home.

Water contamination caused by septic systems affects every single one of us.


It affects our health.

When the water table rises, so does the level of unsafe, untreated waste water. Backyards get filled with bacteria, which can lead to a variety of illnesses. 


It affects our environment.

Contaminated waste water from septic systems – carrying detergents, soaps, bleach and other unsafe chemicals – runs off into Port Royal Sound, the May River, Jarvis Creek, Broad Creek, the Colleton River and the Atlantic Ocean, threatening the ecological health of our waterways, shellfish beds and marine life.



It affects our economy.

The effects of waste water contamination endanger our world class Hilton Head Island resort brand, our beautiful natural environment and the livelihoods of the people who make their living serving the 2.1 million annual visitors.


The 2018 Worldbank water report confirms this, stating, "Sanitation has socio-economic implications. Diseases associated with poor sanitation have been closely correlated with poverty and account for about 10% of the global burden of disease. In the U.S., improved santitation yields about $5 for every $2 spent." 


You can help.

Public sewer connection can be cost prohibitive for households struggling to make ends meet. So Community Foundation of the Lowcountry, Hilton Head Public Service District and the Town of Hilton Head Island have come together to address the issue of septic systems.  

The Town of Hilton Head Island has allocated over $10 million to bring sewer mains to areas of the Island still unserved. Hilton Head PSD is building the pump stations and is project manager to assure the work is accomplished. But that doesn’t finish the job – and the Town and PSD can’t do it alone. That’s where Project SAFE (Sewer Access for Everyone) comes in.

Through Project SAFE, Community Foundation of the Lowcountry will raise the remaining $3 million in funds needed to connect hundreds of low-income homes to the public sewer system, eliminating the septic systems that are failing us all.  

It’s time for those who can to come together to raise the money for those who cannot afford to make the connection.

We only have $450,000 left to raise!

Help us connect for good. Donate now.



Community Foundation of the Lowcountry

Mailing Address
P.O. Box 23019
Hilton Head Island,
South Carolina 29925

Office Location
4 Northridge Drive, Suite A
Hilton Head Island,
South Carolina 29926

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