This month is our last project together ~ we have come full circle. I started over 4 years ago choosing a charity that was attempting to make an impact on what I believed (and still do) is one of the most crucial world problems and yet one that can and will be solved. I believe that through organisations like 20 Liters we will be able to have every person on the planet able to access clean safe water.
20 Liters was our first ever project together and now it will be our last.
Last month our support for One Day’s Wages was not our most successful.
How about for the last month together we try and make some kind of record.
A bit about 20 Liters ……..
It is hard to comprehend a world water crisis when we can just get water by simply walking a few feet and turn on a tap. We are never more than a few short meters from our next drink of clean water.
For the nearly 800 million people across the world without access to clean water, however, that walk can take hours and culminates in filling a 20-litre jerry can with dirty water from a river, swamp, or even a muddy puddle. I believe that this isn’t right—and this month again through the organisation of 20-Liters we are doing something about it.
20 Liters, are in the business of making dirty water clean and providing those solutions to individuals, families, groups and communities across Sub-Saharan Africa. The solutions they use are Sand and Membrane (SAM) Filters and Rainwater Harvesting Systems.
SAM filters are based on the concept of two-stage filtering. These simple, cost-effective solutions remove the harmful bacteria from water that’s been collected from contaminated sources, such a river, swamp or mud puddle. The end result is improved health, as well as an improved quality of life.
And since Sub-Saharan Africa gets far more rain than you’d ever think, Rainwater Harvesting Systems allow large amounts of water to be collected in 10,000 liter tanks installed on churches and other community buildings, then filtered and distributed to the communities.
The simple system essentially consists of 2 buckets and works on the principle described in detail here. The upper bucket has 2 inches of coarse sand and 4 inches of fine sand that acts as a sand filter, filtering out sediment, worm cysts, and parasites. The water then flows into the bucket below where it is filtered through a .2 micron hollow fiber filter which removes virtually all bacteria and viral pathogens.
The sand in the filter does two things: it strains out the larger particles like sediment, parasites, and amebas, while also acting as a home for bacteria. When the sand is fully colonized by bacteria, which happens after about three weeks, the colonized bacteria are capable of destroying 90 to 95% of the bacteria in the water poured through it.
SAM 3 filters are placed in households for a single family’s use (although many families still share clean water with their neighbors). They require no electricity to function, making it ideal for rural districts, as most homes lack electricity. Each household is taught how to use the filter, empowering them to be self-sufficient and address their own needs. Each SAM 3 costs approximately $100 for materials, training, and follow-up maintenance and home visits.
SAM 2’s are larger higher-capacity models, making them a perfect fit for schools and health clinics requiring higher usage. With a cost of $2,000 per unit (which includes material costs, training, and ongoing follow-up and maintenance), SAM 2’s are able to provide clean water for 400 people for 10 years.
By assisting 20 Liters we will be making a tangible and lasting difference in the lives of many.
Now what can we do this month?
Please don’t forget to drop back here to let us know anonymously how much you donated this month.