Water is the driving force of all nature. – Leonardo da Vinci
Roti, Kapda aur Makaan – a traditional list of immediate basic needs of every household. But there is something far more basic and more important than these three, Water. Even though the access to safe drinking water has improved over the last decades in almost every part of the world, but approximately one billion people still lack access to safe water, especially in developing countries. Amidst water scarcity in India, two 17-year-old girls from Delhi are distributing water filters to residents of slums in and around Delhi.
Students at Shri Ram School, Manya Kalra and Sana Kharbanda has managed to raise a whopping sum of around Rs. 4 lakh in four months through their crowd funded initiative on ketto ‘Elixir Shudh Paani ki Shapath’, to install water purifiers in the homes of slum dwellers in Delhi.
The duo interacted with the women and children in the slums and after hearing 8-year-old Fiza say, ‘Humein mitti wala paani peena padta hai (we have to drink muddy water)’, they realised that unavailability of clean drinking water was one of the biggest worries these people faced.
The water is highly contaminated with chemicals and other pollutants. Sometimes it’s visibly muddy and unclean due to which children catch several water-borne diseases quite easily,” says Manya.
Seeing the situation first hand and realizing the scope of the problem, Manya and Sana decided to work on this issue and came up with the idea of distributing water purifiers. They teamed up with Tata Chemicals and chose the non-electric and economical, Tata Swach Cristella Plus filter, which is a rather effective purifier. On learning that this project is a social initiative, Tata Chemicals agreed to service the purifiers for free for one year.
The cost of one purifier, including servicing for two years, is Rs 1500. So far, the duo has donated purifiers to 70 households in the Chakkarpur settlement.
And now, with the Rs 4 lakh funding available to them, they can distribute purifiers to over 250 families.
Today, when the world is facing an unprecedented set of problems, Manya and Sana are doing their bit by helping those who can’t afford to help themselves. People like them may seem like a drop in the ocean but they are creating ripples of hope, trying to ignite an inextinguishable flicker in our hearts when we are surrounded by utter darkness.