SafeSIPP is a more-than-profit venture designing portable water purification systems for developing countries with limited access to clean drinking water.
About Your Organization
United States, AZ, Tempe, Maricopa County
Country where this project is creating social impact
South Africa, LP, Bergnek
Is your organization a
How long has your organization been operating?
Less than a year
Has the organization received awards or honors? Please tell us about them
Edson Student Entrepreneur Initiative $14,000 recipient, 2012
EPICS Team of the Year, 2012
EPICS "Make A Difference" Award, 2012
Participant and Finalist at Stanford E-Bootcamp, 2012
Dell Social Innovation Challenge Semi-Finalist, 2012
Awarded 2nd Place receiving $1500 at EPICS P3 Event, 2012
Awarded 1st Place receiving $950 at General Dynamics
Presidential Luncheon, 2012
ASU Innovation Challenge recipient of $3000, 2012
Featured on the Front Page of the Phoenix Business Journal, 2012
Awarded 1st Place receiving $2000 at EPICS P3 Event, 2012
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Name Your Entry
Select the stage that best applies to your solution
Idea (you're poised to launch)
How long have you been in operation?
Still in idea phase, but looking to launch soon
Which of the following best describes the barrier(s) your innovation addresses? Choose up to two
The Need: What problem are you trying to solve?
There are two problems facing rural communities in the developing world: transportation and purification of drinking water. Throughout the developing world, 884 million people lack access to safe drinking water resulting in 3.5 million deaths due to water-related illness. According to the United Nations, access to safe drinking water will reduce poverty by promoting economic growth.
Each day, women and children are forced to travel over a mile balancing 80 pound jugs on their heads to obtain water. Over a long time period, this chore of carrying heavy loads results in health problems such as pregnancy complications and spinal deformity. In addition, women and children spend their time collecting water for their families instead of working to earn an income or attending school.
The Solution: What is your solution? Be specific!
SafeSIPP has designed a system that simultaneously transports and purifies contaminated water. The system is composed of a 30-gallon recycled industrial barrel with an integrated purification system. As the barrel rolls from the water source to the community, the water being transported undergoes a purification process to remove disease-causing contaminants. This system improves the method of transportation by more than doubling the amount of water retrieved during each trip and reducing the travel time to and from the source by 75%.
At present, there are rolling devices that transport water from the source to the community; however, the water transported still hosts a variety of harmful and potentially fatal contaminants. Other purification devices are expensive and require extensive maintenance. Furthermore, current solutions manufacture their products from scratch, leaving a large carbon footprint. SafeSIPP utilizes recycled materials to reduce the effect on the environment.
The Model: Walk us through a specific example of how your solution makes a difference; include your primary activities
SafeSIPP derives revenue from business to business sales. The target market, composed of NPO’s and social enterprises, purchases SafeSIPP’s systems and then sells them to local residents in the developing world. The NPO’s and social enterprises have established strong connections and relationships with rural communities that lack access to clean water. Through these relationships, they have gained the trust of the communities and have the capability to distribute to the local residents. By selling the systems to the local residents, an incentive for the local resident to work is created. Donations to developing countries do not provide incentive to work and produce a negative effect on the economy.
In the developing world, a micro-financing platform will be established to foster growth in the rural communities. Women in the communities will have the opportunity to engage in establishing their own businesses allowing them to become more independent and self-sufficient. The additional purified water that would not have been obtained without SafeSIPP’s systems will be sold to surrounding communities and local businesses to generate revenue. The revenue will be used to purchase additional systems and replacement filters, leaving a monetary profit. On average this monetary profit will increase the annual family income by 25%.
The Marketplace: Who are your peers and competitors? Identify others also working to address the needs you are and what differentiates you from them. What challenges could these players pose to your success or growth?
Wello has developed a water transportation system that provides people with easier access to clean water. Wello’s system, WaterWheel, transports 90 liters of water. SafeSIPP has a similar design and adds value to the design by integrating a purification system.
LifeStraw provides portable, hand-held water filtration straws that can be carried by individuals to the water source. SafeSIPP provides a sustainable product which not only targets drinking water, but can provide water purification in mass quantities that can easily be stored for future use.
Challenges these players pose to SafeSIPP's success or growth would be implementation of a similar design or idea. In order to reduce the likelihood, SafeSIPP is in the process of patenting the design.
This Entry is about (Issues)
What solution(s) does your initiative address to better the lives of girls and women by leveraging technology? (select all applicable)
Access to technology, Access to education/training, Access to economic opportunity.
What has been the impact of your solution to date?
No other single intervention is more likely to have a significant impact on global poverty and world health than the provision of clean water. SafeSIPP will become the global leader in providing this intervention. Water provided by SafeSIPP systems will be used for cooking, drinking, cleaning, as well as sanitation needs. Any additional purified water can then be sold to surrounding communities, tourists, and local businesses to generate revenue. Through these sales, the owner has the ability to earn revenue which goes toward the purchase of replacement filters, additional systems, growth of fresh produce while still leaving a profit for the user. This allows the system to be sustainable and stimulate the economy of developing countries.
This October, SafeSIPP is travelling to South Africa to implement and launch the first 20 systems within the community as well as educate the community on the use of these systems. SafeSIPP will receive valuable feedback for any modifications.
What is your projected impact over the next 1-3 years?
Over the next few years, SafeSIPP aims to form 2 additional partnerships with Non-Profit organizations in South Africa to collaborate with the implementation of SafeSIPP systems within the community to empower women and children to improve their quality of life.
Working with the non-profit organization, My Arms Wide Open, SafeSIPP aims to establish a manufacturing facility in the rural community of Bergnek, providing employment for the production of theses systems within the community. SafeSIPP aims to produce enough systems to provide enough clean and safe drinking water for 12,000 people within this time frame.
What barriers might hinder the success of your project? How do you plan to overcome them?
One key barrier that may hinder the success of SafeSIPP would be the distance and communication with the community in South Africa. Because SafeSIPP founders will not be stationed directly in South Africa overseeing the development of the systems, this may result in poor construction or adaptations to design. In order to overcome this barrier, SafeSIPP is collaborating with Warren Te Brugge, President at CEO of My Arms Wide Open, a non-profit organization based in South Africa who has contacts and employees on site to oversee and relay key challenges and feedback on the implementation and success of SafeSIPP systems.
Winning entries present a strong plan for how they will achieve and track growth. Identify your six-month milestone for growing your impact
Implement SafeSIPP systems within South African Community
Identify three major tasks you will have to complete to reach your six-month milestone
Travel to Bergnek, South Africa for launch of pilot systems within community with non-profit mentor from "My Arms Wide Open"
Obtain water sample from community to verify contaminants in water and make necessary filtration modifications.
Form legal entity for product and company protection
Now think bigger! Identify your 12-month impact milestone
Implement SafeSIPP systems within 2 additional communities in Africa
Identify three major tasks you will have to complete to reach your 12-month milestone
Establish patent for SafeSIPP systems for product protection
Finalize SafeSIPP system design and begin cost reduction for manufacturing within communities
Acquire 2 additional non-profit organizations interested in implementing SafeSIPP systems in communities
Founding Story: We want to hear about your "Aha!" moment. Share the story of where and when the founder(s) saw this solution's potential to change the world.
The idea originated with a conversation I had with my cousin who happened to recently travel to Africa. We were discussing her experience within the community and she mentioned the water crisis at hand and how women and children were responsible for retrieving water over long distances for the community. This really touched my heart and I felt empowered to share this story and do a bit of research. Three close friends and I began to research current solutions available and could not identify any on the market that both transported and purified contaminated water. Among us were three chemical engineers, so we decided to take the task on with brainstorming designs and collaborated together to develop our solution, SafeSIPP - Sustainable, Innovative, Portable, Purification.
Tell us about your partnerships
SafeSIPP is collaborating with My Arms Wide Open, a non profit organization that provides support for mothers, children, and youth in South Africa to build sustainable communities and responsible businesses.
My Arms Wide Open works directly with community members, who identify priorities for community development by helping them improve their skills and knowledge in areas such as entrepreneurship, leadership, mentoring, education and personal development.
Please elaborate on any needs or offers you have mentioned above and/or suggest categories of support that aren't specified within the list