“Water, water, everywhere, Nor any drop to drink.”
- The Rhyme of the Ancient Mariner, Samuel Taylor Coleridge
Think about this:
Over a billion people lack access to safe drinking water – approximately one in every six people on earth.
More than 50% of the hospital beds the world over are occupied by patients suffering from a water-related disease.
For children under age five, water-related diseases are the leading cause of death.
Every 15 seconds, a child dies from a water-related disease.
September 2007. Bihar had been flooding for more than a month. Yet again. Over 40% of the state was submerged, affecting close to 20 million people and killing around 700. Solving the problem of scarcity of drinking water was essential to prevent further damage. A small flute-like tube was distributed to over eight thousand people by UNICEF, with the help of Rotary International, to make water safe for human consumption.
LifeStraw is a personal, low-cost water purification tool invented by the Danish company Vestergaard Frandsen. Weighing about 140 grams, it is about 30 cm long and has a diameter of 3 cm. LifeStraw does not require electrical power and can be easily carried around for access to safe and clean water. It is effective at removing nearly all bacteria and viruses responsible for common waterborne diseases.
To use LifeStraw, one has to simply dip it into a water source and suck on it, as with a normal straw. LifeStraw can be used for approximately a year, filtering a minimum of 700 litres of water. Though, it does not cost much more than 3$, presently LifeStraw is only available for institutional purchase, and not available in retail.
One in every six people…
LifeStraw is one possible way to decrease this ratio. As it is not available in retail, to make LifeStraw available to people who really need it, we need to find organizations which will support this cause. If you have any in mind, together we can make a difference.