Aqua Clara International (ACI) exists to get affordable, clean drinking water to those in need. ACI trains local people in the construction, use, maintenance and promotion of improved bio sand filters and safe water storage containers. The filters are constructed out of locally available materials which keeps the cost affordable. The knowledge, economic activity and expertise remains local which means that the ACI model is both sustainable and scalable.
The ACI model is based on the premise that the projects should be locally managed and as locally driven as possible. We train local experts to build WASH products out of locally sourced materials and help to create locally sustainable small businesses. ACI believes that there should be a local expert available to perform any necessary maintenance and also serve as an easily accessible information resource for the local community.
Drinking Water - Households
History of Water Projects
Related work not on PWX.
Aqua Clara International is committed to getting safe, affordable drinking water to those in need in a locally sustainable and scalable way. Since it's inception, ACI's focus has been on training and empowering local people to construct improved bio sand filters for themselves and their communities.
The ACI program is demand driven and trains only where it is invited to do so by a local leader or organization. ACI has many small locally producing groups as opposed to one centralized manufacturing site. This helps to ensure that transport costs are minimized while also allowing for more local ownership of the project. Some of these groups are operating on a for-profit basis, while others operate more as a non-loss social business. These trained individuals are known as Community Development Entrepreneurs (CDEs) and they are the local experts in their rural communities. The program model allows for local flexibility and creativity. The typical material cost of an ACI water filter in Kenya is around $10, which will provide enough clean drinking water for a family for up to 10 years.
ACI has a network of Community Health Promoters (CHPs) who are local women who oversee the work of the CDEs. ACI places a high priority on hygiene education through the CHPs who visit the filter users regularly and train school children on good WASH practices.
Currently, over 6,000 ACI water filters have been constructed and placed in households in over 20 countries. Aqua Clara International has staff led programs in Kenya, Uganda, and Nicaragua.
Aqua Clara International was founded by retired engineer and businessman, Dr Bob McDonald. After spending many years working in the Middle East and Africa, Bob dedicated his retirement to developing an effective, affordable water purification method that can be constructed from locally available materials by local people almost anywhere in the world.
Aqua Clara has evolved into a dynamic organization that is working towards expanding its model beyond biosand filters and safe water storage containers to rainwater harvesting and affordable sanitation solutions.