Clean Water for Fiji
Our mission: provide access to clean water in the form of portable water filtration systems
Many countries that are home to the best surf breaks in the world do not have access to safe drinking water. We believe clean water is a fundamental right that we take for granted every day. That’s why we wanted to give back all the joy we get from surfing to the local communities. Following the philosophy of Waves For Water, in 2017, we set out on a mission to Fiji to deliver clean water in the form of portable water filtration systems.
You have probably seen a bottle of Fiji water before. Yeah, the fancy square bottle with the flowery design. That water comes all the way from the South Pacific right to your local supermarket. However, 53% of the population in Fiji does not have access to clean water. So we can easily get clean water from Fiji more simply than Fijians can.
On our trip, we visited villages on the Coral Coast (Viti Levu) that had a very restricted water supply from the government and smaller settlements that relied on creeks and rivers to supply fresh water. Many people get their drinking water from the same dirty creek they use for washing dishes and showering. The poor access to clean drinking water and improper hygiene practices causes many illnesses such as Cholera, Salmonella, Giardia, E. coli and Typhoid.
This village only receives clean water in the morning from the next bigger town, Sigatoka. A filter allows them to clean river water and use it for drinking, cooking and washing any time.
More importantly, schools only remain open if they can provide clean water. This means that having access to clean water not only reduces the risk of waterborne diseases, but also improves many other aspects of life.
Clean water = less sick days = more education = citizen empowerment
But how do these filters work?
Dirty water flows through tiny U-shaped hollow fiber micro-tubes that trap 99.9% of bacteria and protozoan known to cause waterborne diseases. The resulting decontaminated water is used for drinking, cooking and cleaning.
These filters are extremely cost-efficient and require low maintenance. One filtration system provides clean water for a small village for a few cents a day. When the filter starts to slow down or clog, it only needs to be backwashed with a syringe (provided in the kit). The simplicity of this system makes them sustainable and dependable.
1 filter = 50$ = clean water for 100 people over 5 years.
It is that simple.
A big thanks goes to everyone that donated to this project and provided hands-on help in Fiji. You are amazing!