A 2011 Unicef report shows that 24% of the Rwandan population is still unable to access a safe drinking water source and 42% have no access to improved sanitation facilities. Rural areas are more affected.
Dirty water causes the vast majority of disease in Rwanda, where life expectancy is less than 50 years.
The report from World Health Organisation (WHO) indicates that every year, 1.5 million people die from diarrhea and other enteric illnesses associated with lack of access to safe drinking water and poor sanitation.
Ninety percent of those people are children under the age of 5, most of them in developing countries including Rwanda.
Only 5% of all Rwandans have running water in their homes.
Some families can access water through community water points, where they are charged a nominal user fee for the water, according to either container size or monthly consumption.
Although Rwanda water and sewerages companyis working around the clock to purify the supplied water challenges are still being faced, making the Health Ministry call on residents to boil or using other water treatments to make sure the water is safe.
However, many cannot afford clean tap water and collect water from local streams and ponds, which puts them at a higher risk of contracting waterborne diseases.
80% of diseases affecting the population are waterborne caused by using unclean water.
Children are more vulnerable than any other age group to the ill effects of unsafe water, poor sanitation and lack of hygiene.
Diarrhoea accounts for 19% of deaths in children under five and experts estimate that child deaths would fall by 18% with more frequent hand washing with soap (Curtis and Cairncross, 2003).
Moved by this report Jones Matt an American national decided to bring to Rwanda SAFI products for water and water waste treatment.
Matt who setup his company last year 2011, during his early days of being in Rwanda. Is the director of Synergy Company which deals in clean water and clean energy solar lighters.
Synergy is located in Gishushu, Kigali on the MTN road. When you turn onto the MTN road from the road to airport, his office is 50 meters after RDB on the right side.
Matt has got two careers, first career was teaching in a secondary school in the United States of America for about 12 years, later on went into construction, as a construction manager for 5 years.
Matt lives here in Rwanda with his wife and a two year old son.
“Business in Rwanda has a big opportunity and since my business is still new the difficult thing is to find ways in distribution, but we are working on that, we are working on the research like understanding how the country works, which is the best way to make our business grow,” Matt says.
The research for newer company involves talking to his competitors to see how they handle certain issues, trying to find other solar companies he can partner with, also inquire people like on how they do their business, who is good in Kigali to work with and makes a list from that.
“Matt says, there other companies that sell the lighting systems and water treatment products, but Synergy treatment products are different from our competitors and our solar lighting is the longest lasting and the most durable one that’s out there.”
His wife is also working here in Rwanda, together with his 2 year old son.
“My son and I are enjoying life here–getting a lot of good attention and care, especially him where he is even carried around by people we don’t know touching his curly hair saying “umuzungu”, a Kinyarwanda word Rwandan language meaning a white person.
In America people rarely go to a child they don’t know, pick other people’s children up, talk to them, there people are always too busy to give sufficient attention to children.
“At Synergy Rwanda we have in store for you, a new treatment option to provide residents clean, safe drinking water.
SAFI is the option for treating drinking water, promoting hygiene, and dealing with waste water.
It’s a Global Imperative: Eliminate Water-borne, Disease Causing Contaminants from the World’s Water Supplies.
“We have the way to do it: SAFI aka (Clean Water Environmental Treatment)).”
-Clinically tested and proven to eradicate Vibrio Cholerae, E. coli, and to act as an algaecide
-Highly cost-effective when compared with chlorine-based formulations or filtration systems
-Formulation leaves water clean without adversely effecting taste and smell
-Biochemical properties keep the solution suspended in water, thereby extending the duration of effectiveness against newly introduced contaminants
-EPA Registration pending approval for use in waste water treatment and swimming pools
-Manufactured at an ISO 9001:2000 certified facility
“We believe that alleviating the causes of water-borne illness and disease will enhance the capacity of the world’s people to lead lives filled with dignity, productivity, innovation, and prosperity,” Matt says.
“Whether in times of crisis or in the course of day-to-day living, to provide the means to eliminate the suffering associated with lack of readily available clean water is our mission.”
How it works
-One drop of SAFI in one liter of water will eliminate all harmful bacteria and algae in less than 60 minutes.
-Lower cost- per- liter- treated water than by any other commercial method available.
-Safe and non-toxic to humans, animals, and the environment.
-Only active ingredient, Copper, is a safe and essential minerals for humans and animals.
-SAFI does not affect the taste and odor of drinking water.
According to matt SAFI works better than other water treatments, because it’s proprietary biochemical composition allows it to stay suspended in water.
Approved by the United States, SAFI treats the water and then remains in its suspended state, waiting to retreat if needed, instead of returning to a gas or sinking to the bottom.
How SAFI waste water treatment works
- SAFI improves treatment of wastewater treatment from a simple pit latrine to a city treatment plant.
- SAFI allows the growth of anaerobic bacteria and promotes the growth of aerobic bacteria. This cuts down on gases and smells, while improving breakdown.
“By using SAFI to treat wastewater, not only will it also reduce odors and have no negative environment impact,” he says.
A bottle of SAFI with 100ML quantity costs only 1 500 frw. This content will treat up to 3300 liters.
Matt has realized that Rwandans like children a lot, not only his son, he says, the attention is given to almost every child, they would stop everything they are doing to give the needed attention to a child here unlike in America.
Matt says, Rwanda is beautiful full of nice people, in my leisure time, I like travelling a lot especially to the out skates of Kigali, to see animals explore the beautiful culture.
“Going to Musanze to see gorillas works well for me, after the tour I stay at the hotel in to see people in their beautiful traditional costumes beating the drums and dancing the night away, it’s a different feeling all together.”
He has visited all the provinces in the country so far.
“There’s a time when my son and I got the chance to see, people practice for a night dance. After that they got the time to talk to us, it was a beautiful experience.”