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Dirty Water + Concrete + Sand = Sustainable Clean Water
5 Team Members

Clean Water for Rwanda

This September, The Community Water Project  will build two revolutionary water treatment systems in rural Rwanda.

For the last four years we have researched in the lab and in the field to design a better water treatment system. We have tailored this system to specifically meet the needs of rural communities in the developing world and now we are going to build it!

Who We Are

The Community Water Project was started by three engineers from the University of Southern California. Viv Pitter was the first in the lab, testing the effectiveness of bio-sand filtration, which is now the core of our water treatment system. Kirsten Rice followed shortly after, and the two of them received 4 awards for their research. Then, Jay Todd Max focused on turning that research into an innovative water treatment system that focuses on community self-sufficiency by drawing upon his first-hand experience living in Bwana, Rwanda in 2012. 

We are very excited to bring our years of hard work out of the lab and into the real world. We believe that our design and implementation strategy—founded on community engagement—can dramatically improve the way clean water projects are enacted in the developing world. 

Rather than a one-project-per-trip model, we aim to start a network of community members and local engineers that are equipped to help neighboring areas build their own bio-sand filters. To learn more about bio-sand filtration systems you can view our guide here and lab results here

This fall we will be building our first two community owned and operated water treatment systems to help create sustainable, clean water in rural Rwanda. 

What We Need & What You Get

Your support goes directly toward the construction of two bio-sand water treatment systems, complete with a pump and water reservoir in the community of Bwana, located in rural Rwanda.

Our goal of $20,000 covers all necessary costs for this water project including construction materials, local labor, sample testing, health education materials, and compensation for our host families.

Fortunately, National Geographic has already granted us $5,000 to cover basic logistics for our trip, so your support will go directly into the water treatment system.

Plus, as a way to thank you, you will get awesome gifts for your donation (see list of Perks). All support is welcome!

    Your Impact

    You are well aware of how clean water is so vital to life. Your donation will help provide water for 200+ people in eastern Africa. These water systems will provide the community of Bwana, Rwanda with pure water for a decade.

    But beyond that, this project is creating jobs in the community and will be owned and operated by Rwandans, changing the way aid is implemented in developing countries. This project will be a starting point for creating a network of community water filters in Africa. Your donation will be an investment in the future and an investment in effective aid.

      Risks & Challenges

      We are aware of the social, economic, and logistical challenges that we potentially will face. We will be joined by Noel Ntabanganyimana, a native Rwandan and construction manager who became a good friend of JT's during his summer living in Rwanda. Noel will be working with us during the project, and with his guidance we have already developed strategic plans from transportation and homestays to securing materials. He has been responsible for the well-being of hundreds of Americans in the Rwamagana district over the past 2 years as a coordinator for Think Impact, a social entrepreneurship program. We are confident that as a team we can overcome any obstacle that may come in the way of building water treatment systems that will last. 

        Other Ways You Can Help

        Spread the word about our work by sharing our IndieGoGo with your friends, family and co-workers through Facebook and email.

        Get creative; use your Twitter, Instagram...heck, use Vine, SnapChat, even Linkedin, revive your MySpace, use Xanga, Friendster, ANYTHING to help spread the world.

        ...even talk to people in real life!

        Link to Our IndiGogo:


        and to our video!


        Thank You!

        Find This Campaign On
        total funds raised
        Original campaign was 101% funded on August 16, 2014
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