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Tuesday, 13 November 2012

LifeStraw: A Humanitarian Innovation

Access to clean drinking water in many developing countries has always been a challenge, and many have suffered as a result of dehydration or polluted water that in no way suitable for human consumption. To be more exact, over one billion individuals, or one seventh of the world's population, lack access to a safe water supply! With bacteria like typhoid, cholera, e.coli, salmonella and many others found in polluted water, you can only imagine the hazards and diseases resulting from drinking from it. So safe water interventions are crucial to transform the lives of millions and ensure they have access to the basic human right of clean water. And this is where LifeStraw comes in.

I came across LifeStraw a few days ago and was fascinated at how a simple product can have such a great positive impact on the lives of many. A simple innovation, but with a huge impact, it reminded me of the water bottle light bulb idea! LifeStraw, which was invented in 2005, is a 25 cm long, 29 mm diameter, plastic pipe filter that has the potential to save millions of lives. At only $2 per unit, LifeStraw serves as a purification tool with a life time of  700 litres (around 1 year of water consumption per person, or 2 years for kids)! Because water cleaning systems are costly and complicated to deploy, there was not much that can be done about water born diseases up until now. LifeStraw has shown positive results when testes on tap, turbid and saline water against common bacteria such as Staphylococcu, Salmonella, Enterococcus, and Shigella. So now with the simplicity of this personal water filter, an individual's annual access to CLEAN water can be secured!

Here's a video to further explain the product and demonstrate how it exactly works:

To find out more about LifeStraw and find out how you can help donate this product to communities in need and spread the word, please visit their website here.

Anoud x


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