Ronnie Stuiver
South Africa

In South Africa there are hundreds of schools without a reliable source of clean drinking water. Girls in particular have to give up time that should be spent on their education to collect water. Since 1989, over 1,800 PlayPump water systems have been installed in South Africa, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Swaziland, and other sub-Saharan African countries. PlayPump water systems are generated by the motion of the merry-go-round as children push them. With the capability to produce up to 1,400 liters of water per hour at 16 rpm from a depth of 40 meters, they can be effective up to a depth of 100 meters. The water is stored in tanks that allow access to the water when needed and is tested to ensure that the water is fit for human consumption. Each borehole is tested to ensure it can sustain prolonged abstraction of water and the flow is sufficient to meet the needs of the community. By providing clean drinking water to villages, the local schools have become more effective with healthy teachers and regular students, including an increase in girls who no longer had to miss school to procure water. Vegetable gardens are also cultivated, which has brought greater economic stability to the villages.


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