Evaluation of Water Survival Box –
Dr Nigel Harris,
A water survival box was taken out to Jinja in South East Uganda by Nigel
Harris. The project was
presented to the Source of Nile Rotary Club and the box was taken to the
Nile Vocational Training Institute (NVI) for use at a village where they
have a Community Based Training (CBT) project.
Following consultation with Rogers Banyenzaki, NVI CBT co-ordinator, the
box was taken out to the Bulunga village for evaluation (see attached
pictures). The village grows crops to provide income.
The main source of water for the village is a water spring which is in
poor condition and is not protected (the pump for the tube well having
been stolen some years previously). One
of the purposes of our visit was to build a protective wall around the
source. The other source of
water is run off rain water.
This is collected and stored in a large cistern.
There are around 400 people in the local community, they seemed
quite happy with their current supply and this water was used to cook with
during our stay.
The demonstration was to one of the community leaders, someone from the local press, a council representative and some of the ladies (see pictures). It was translated by one of the residents who spoke good English. They understood that the box was primarily intended for emergency use when good quality water was not available. I explained that in their situation, it could also be used as a source of high quality water for young babies or children and if they were sick.
We filled the box with local water (this is transported in the yellow
plastic 4 gallon drums). We
added one tablet, which dissolved well and timed it for 20 minutes. The
wait was a source of frustration, but they understood the need for this.
We then connected the pump and filled up one of the clear plastic
The water was excellent and had a clean taste.
The people were impressed, particularly when then saw it was as
good as bottled water. The box was left in the village and
Comments and observations
The box worked very well, it produced 1 gallon of good quality water very
Pictorial instructions need to be printed on the box (separate bits of paper will go missing) it is unclear how many tablets should be used to treat the contents.
There may be no means of timing in the village – could a mechanical timer be attached to the box?
Nigel Harris, April 2009
Nigel Harris, April 2009
Photographs showing the Water Box evaluation session
The village community centre. The large tank on the left stores