Friday, March 30, 2007

Grab Bag Friday: Play Pumps: 100 Pumps in 100 Days Challenge

A friend of mine handed me a videotape of this Frontline segment last week, and I was blown away by the simplicity and grass-roots brilliance of the Play Pump. Now if you haven't heard of this already (and I hadn't), the Play Pump was developed by Trevor Field, a retired advertising executive. A regular guy who had done well in life and wanted to find a way to give back. It's basically a merry-go-round that children can play on, but it's attached to a pump, and a reservoir, and while the kids are playing, they are pumping clean water into the reservoir.

Here are some facts from the Play Pumps website:
  • More than one billion people worldwide do not have access to clean water.
  • Water-related diseases are the leading cause of death in the world, taking the lives of 6,000 people a day.
  • Every 15 seconds a child dies from a preventable, water-related disease.
  • 40 billion hours are lost annually to hauling water, a chore primarily undertaken by women and girls.
One play pump can pump up to 1400 liters of clean water a day. That's a huge impact on a community. Plus, the kids are encouraged to have fun and stay in school instead of spending their time collecting and hauling heavy buckets of (often contaminated) water every morning.

How You Can Get Involved
From March 22 through June 29, PlayPumps International hopes to raise funds to provide clean drinking water to 100 communities (250,000 people) in sub-Saharan Africa. If we all do just a little bit, we can make a big difference!
  • Watch the Frontline segment for a good overview, and pass it on to your family and friends.
  • Visit the Play Pumps website to read testimonials, learn about how the pumps work, and learn about how you can help.
  • Use the banner on the side of this page to donate to Play Pumps. The banner will keep track of how much Please Come Flying readers are donating. Let's see if we can really make an impact!
  • Get your kids involved! This is a great project for kids to learn about, and to use some of their allowance money to make a difference in the world. Even $5 will add up if we all chip in. A great way to do this is to offer your kids a "match"...if they donate $10, you'll donate $10. That helps kids feel like they're doubling their impact.
  • Link to this blog, or to the Frontline segment, or to the Play Pumps website. Spread the word!

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