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Much like 46% of the global population, the families we worked with in Cerro Verde, a 30,000-person slum outside of Lima, Peru, do not have access to running water in their homes. A truck delivers non-potable water to barrels at the bottom of the hillside, and women carry water up the hill into their homes. In order to use the water, women must transfer the water from pitcher to bucket, often spilling or contaminating water along the way. In washing dishes, the women rinse the plates in standing water, which grows increasingly soapy and dirty with every wash.
Handwashing alone can save twice as many lives as clean water alone, but without convenient access to soap and water, children often go without. Often, we witnessed people submerging their hands in grey water to clean them. Alternatively they would scoop a tub of water from the bucket, place the tub in their mouth and pour the water over their hands to simulate running water. All of these hand-washing techniques either left their hands still dirty, or exposed their body and source water to contamination. Balde a Balde address these hygiene issues by making water accessible and easy to control.
Balde a Balde is a portable faucet that provides running water from any bucket, to maximize cleanliness while optimizing water use. Balde a Balde (Spanish for “Bucket to Bucket”) captures the experience and health benefits of using a tap for those living without running water. This product consists of a clip, hose, siphon pump and on/off valve. The clip effortlessly attaches Balde a Balde to any existing water container, making the faucet portable and multifunctional. Squeezing the siphon bulb pump harnesses gravity to create a continuous flow of water. Twisting the valve adjusts the volume of the stream, so families can control their water use. Tapping the spout instantly turns on and off the water, making Balde a Balde easy to use one-handed, even with soapy hands. Balde a Balde offers an affordable alternative to existing sink systems by leveraging existing water containers and patterns of use.
In their video feedback from field-testing, the women of Cerro Verde confirmed the value of this product. They used if from anything from creating a wash station for their children, to emptying their storage containers. For them, Balde a Balde took some of the worry and hassle out of making sure their families stayed clean and healthy.