Problem Addressed

Waterborne diseases are the leading cause of child mortality and cause stress and added expenses for families and government-run healthcare centers. Though there are water filters on the Tanzanian market, they have some major limitations. Locally-made filters do not safely filter drinking water, while higher-quality filters made abroad are difficult for local customers to maintain and repair.

These filters are also not customized to local environments and are not able to combat all of these issues; this becomes a problem because there are places where the water contains excessive fluoride or heavy metals and is turbid. In addition, purification systems are often expensive and local people cannot afford to purchase an entire one, though they can afford to purchase drinking water if it is cheap and easily available within their community.

Innovative Approach

Gongali’s water filter is locally made and takes into account the specific needs of the local community. Gongali develops customized products for their geographical area, and they innovate specific materials that are part of the integrated filter.

Program Solution

Gongali has created an innovative water filter that is adapted to filtering out the types of contamination found in local communities in Tanzania. They have established water stations in communities that are run by local entrepreneurs from the community. Gongali gives them high-quality water filters for free and the entrepreneurs pay about 50 US cents per day to use the filter. They do training for their entrepreneurs and also provide them with informative literature on filters.

These entrepreneurs then sell water at a low cost, about five times cheaper than bottled water. Households can also purchase the filters for about $150. After filtering 800 liters, the filters need to be cleaned or replaced, and it costs about $5 to do so. If the entrepreneur wants to end their business, Gongali reclaims the filter.