Who knew that repairing bicycles could help save lives? We meet Brighton from Gundani Village in Kasungu who tells us how he started his own water pump business.
In Malawi as many as 30% of water pumps break and fall into disrepair which puts entire communities at risk of preventable diseases. Pump Aid is working alongside UNICEF to set up local water supply businesses by training and mentoring artisans in pump building and maintenance to help end rural water poverty.
Brighton is an entrepreneur on Pump Aid’s programme and through his training in pump building and marketing he has set up a water pump business to provide individuals with their own source of clean water. Before starting Pump Aid’s programme Brighton made and repaired bicycles. He then came across the self supply programme and realised that welding was also a vital skill required in pump building and soon began to realise that building water pumps and providing clean water is where the future lay for him and his family.
Brighton now owns a welding shop in Gundani Villageand employs his brother to help him run his business. He sells pumps to people who want to install their own and also installs them himself with the help of a local well digger. Pump Aid’s training on the principles of Rope Pump, Installation & Maintenance has helped Brighton design 3 different water pump models for different uses; agriculture, household and community. Watch a video of Brighton demonstrating his household water pump here.
The addition of pump manufacturing to Brighton’s bicycle business has benefited his family considerably. He can pay his bills without any struggles, buy enough food for his wife and two small children for the whole year and has purchased a piece of land for farming. Brighton’s big ambition is to own a shop where he can sell the pumps so he can support his wider family.
However, starting a new business comes with challenges too. Brighton’s biggest challenge is his lack of transport. Many of his customers requiring water pumps are located far and he does not have the means to reach them so they continually suffer without clean water. Additional funding to this project could develop this programme and help more entrepreneurs like Brighton grow their business to ensure that even the most isolated villages have the chance to access clean water.
To read more about this new programme please visit our web page here.
This blog is part of a series for World Water Day. To read stories from other families visit our page here.