Surprisingly, access to safe and clean drinking water remains a concern throughout the world: over 140 million children and families lack consistent access to water, and in some places the walk to access drinking and bathing water can be miles long. Every day in the spring, world peacekeeping authorities celebrate “clean water day,” devoted to raising awareness of the constant need for clean and safe water worldwide.
Although inventors have recently distributed millions of portable water filters that can remove environmental parasites and allow people to drink clean water, countries may have political issues that prevent the widespread adoption of these devices. All over the developing world, inventors are working to distribute inexpensive solutions to common problems faced by developing countries.
Recently, people who live in places that have tin roofs developed a method of lighting their homes without electricity. A plastic soda bottle with water and a small amount of bleach — set into a hole cut into the roof — can provide enough light that some people who live without electricity are now able to grow food indoors. The inventor has distributed hundreds of thousands of donated bottles to residents who live in developing nations.
Another inspiring story comes from a country where access to building materials for inventions is at a premium: a teenaged inventor who built a working generator out of recycled materials. Not only has he created his own radio show with his generator and transmitters, but he has already been recruited by a major American engineering university.
The good news for philanthropists and for people who continue to mark “clean water day” every year is that much is being done to help the developing world make its way to a brighter future. Companies online distribute free animals to people in need; the concept of microfinance, the distribution of small amounts of money outside the purview of traditional banks also enjoys continued popularity. World Water Day is an essential part of increasing awareness, but perhaps one day we will no longer need to observe it.