BlueZones in Africa, is a project of FairWater to promote reliable and sustainable community handpumps that can be maintained at low cost and that can be used for a long time before needing a simple check-up.
The durable concept of the BlueZones was originally developed in the Rural Development Project in Kenya in 2003 and was further tested in Africa and improved by the co-founder of FairWater, Paul van Beers, in cooperation with several international NGOs, such as Oxfam Kenya and UNICEF Mozambique. The concept is based on the combination of using a very strong & reliable, simple handpump (The BluePump) with a straight foreward regional support structure for technical back-up in case of a major problem.
FairWater assist NGOs in the set-up of the BlueZone maintenance structure. The BluePump itself can be obtained with BOODE B.V. in the Netherlands and through local BluePump distributors in Africa, for a "fair" price, with a reliable after sale service for installation and technical backup.
Why use the BluePump?
The BluePump is more expensive compared to the cheaper VLOM handpumps! But all studies and statistics show that these cheap India VLOM pumps do not last, they break down too often, are complicated and expensive to repair and need many spare parts. In the end these VLOM pumps are very expensive to maintain for the users, besides, spare parts are often not available.
BluePumps on the contrary, are very reliable, don't need regular spare parts and can therefore be maintained at a very low cost with the help of a regional support sructure. By 2011 there are already 8 BlueZones starting to operate in Africa with over 300 BluePumps. The concept has become rapidly popular with the users and serious NGOs.
The BluePump has many qualities:
- Amazingly simple to install and maintain without special tools
- High water output: >1 m3 / hour at 60m.
- Light pumping, also at greater depth
- Long life pump BPS system, maintenance free
- strong 2m. rods, fully threaded, so incase of problems, the rod can still be used
- simple & resistant rubber centralizers, that can also be made locally
- Regular maintenance is only tightening of nuts & bolts
- Simple check-up every 5 to 10 years
- The cap can be used for advertisement, which creates income
Contact BOODE B.V. in the Netherlands for more info.