Hybrid Merri-Go-Round Water Pump Saves Lives in Africa


Tell a kid to do some work, like clean their room or take out the garbage, and they roll their eyes and run in the other direction. If you're living in a rural village in Africa, Mom might ask you to walk 2 miles for a bucket of water. What do you do?

Why go to play of course! We imagine that kids everywhere are pretty much the same, that's why we love the idea of PumpPlay, a children's playground toy that pumps clean, safe water as they play.

Capable of producing up to 1,400 liters of water per hour from a depth of 40 meters, PlayPump, a South African NGO has so far donated and installed 1,000 pumps to communities in South Africa, Mozambique, Swaziland and Zambia.

New pumps are being planned for Ethiopia, Kenya, Lesotho, Malawi, Tanzania, and Uganda.

And the project was first featured on TreeHugger back in 2005.

Time for an update:

Spinning on the merri-go-round, clean water is pumped from an underground well into a 2,500-liter tank which is built seven meters above the ground.

"A simple tap makes it easy for adults and children to draw water," boasts PlayPump's website, while "excess water is diverted from the storage tank back down into the borehole."

Installed near schools, the PlayPump provides easy access to clean drinking water, it brings joy to children, and improves education, health and development.

TreeHugger related ::The Roundabout: Harnessing Kid Power to Pump Water! ::Plantware: New Meaning to Urban Jungle ::Afrigadget: The Can-Do Attitude Personified

More updates — A video from National Geographic on how PlayPump works:

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