Drinking clean water from a biosand filter
Manjali Hasda drinks clean water from the biosand water filter at her home in Sharanamati Village, Nepal
The Biosand Filter 'Factory'
A schoolboy cycles past the biosand filter factory on his way to school in Sharanamati. The factory can be reached via a sandy road. It requires no electricity and no more than a light shelter to provide workers with some protection from the elements.
Maintenance work at the Biosand factory
Factory workers, Dhanamumi Murmi and Anjan Dahal ,maintain one of the basic moulds, from which biosand filters are constructed. They are two of only half a dozen employees who run the factory and are responsible for building all the biosand water filters for the local area.
Preparing the materials
Dhanamumi Murmi mixes the cement that she will use to construct the biosand filters. The materials required for the construction of the filters are readily available, inexpensive but very resilient.
Mixing the aggregate
Dhanamumi Murmi cleans and sorts the gravel that she will use in the biosand filters. A gravel layer elevates other materials above the outlet pipe, ensuring that it is kept free flowing.
Preparing the water containers
Lukhi Ram, an employee at the biosand water filter factory, is preparing the containers which will sit in the top of the biosand filters. Water can be collected from any source and poured into the orange containers, from where gravity will pull it down through several layers, killing 99% of bacteria inthe process.
Loading up the trailer
Removed from their moulds and freshly painted, the biosand filters and sacks of sand and gravel are loaded onto a trailer, ready for delivery and installation.
Collecting water from a ground source pump
Muna Thapa collects water from a ground source water pump outside her village home. This water has not been treated and whilst it can be used for irrigtaion, it may not be safe to drink. However, it does provide a source of water that Muna can put into the biosand filter.
Replenishing the water supply
Muna Thapa fills the biosand filter with water collected from a ground source pump. Gravity will draw the water through a biological layer, then through layers of sand and gravel, removing 99% of bacteria in the process.
Sharanamati Village, Nepal
Muna's biosand filter is inexpensive, easy to maintain, does not require electricity and provides a reliable source of clean water for Muna and her family.
Radhika tops up the container at the top of the biosand filter.
Radhika's kitchen is simple but effective. A gas hob, a few spices and clean water, courtesy of the CAWST biosand filter.
Collecting clean water
Whilst many of us take it for granted that clean, uncontaminated water will pour out of our taps, it's not something that Radhika could be sure of without her family's biosand filter.
Ram Pokherai drinks clean water from his family's biosand filter
Clean water helps children stay healthy, which means they are less likely to need time away from school, so their education improves. Providing clean water has important knock-on effects.
Hygiene and Sanitation
Before dinner, Chandramani Karki and Rajes Thapa wash their hands in the water from a biosand water filter. Educating families about the importance of hygiene and sanitation ensures that they can make the most of their clean water supply.
Ever smiling, Parbati collects water for her biosand filter from a communal hand pump.
After dinner, Asmita drinks water from her family's biosand filter.
Getting ready for school
In the morning, Tara Dahal helps her daughter with her school uniform in the family kitchen. A biosand filter allows Tara to wash fruit and vegetables with uncontamintaed water, allowing her to be confident that her children are far less likely to become ill.
Bisnu replenishes the biosand water filter outside her family home in Sharanamati Village.
Happy and healthy
Cheerful Manjali Hasda in the doorway of her village home.
Every home should have one
And most homes in this rural, Nepalese community do. Radhika Murmu drinks water from a biosand water filter inside the doorway to her family home.
Centre for Affordable Water and Sanitation Technology
Images from this assignment are being used to raise awareness of the important work that CAWST is doing, providing the resources and education required for reliable clean water supplies in rural areas.