Take an inventive Britton living in Australia with a passion for environmental sustainability and green technologies. Mix with a love for travel, add in exposure to underdeveloped countries facing problems caused by poor or a lack of water resources - and you have a recipe for the invention of an innovative water saving device that is changing lives.
For Stuart Mason, the inventor of the SpaTap, and the recipient of a US$10,000 prize in Standard Bank’s Water 4 Africa competition, the recent win represents an opportunity to see his invention being used in sub-Saharan Africa where it is estimated that 334 million people need access to clean water.
He says his ambition is to see every child in Africa can have their own tap for life.
SpaTap’s uniqueness lies in its valve which transforms a plastic bottle into a shower or tap. The advantage is that people are knee-deep in plastic bottles. The SpaTap enables these to be repurposed into something functional. Simply attach the SpaTap to any bottle and transform it into a portable tap or shower.
The Water 4 Africa competition was a crowdsourcing initiative, via Standard Bank’s IdeaScale platform, to attract people from Africa and around the world to put forward suggestions on solving Africa’s water supply dilemmas.
Water 4 Africa encouraged all sectors of the community to compete by entering innovative ideas and projects, in various stages of development, to provide solutions around the supply and conservation of clean water.
The belief is that the SpaTap, which is being used for disaster relief in Vanuatu, is that this solution could find broad applications in sub-Saharan Africa too. It is also encouraging that the product has been recognised as a water saving and hand-washing device for schools by the World Vision organisation.
The Water 4 Africa campaign is one of the contributions Standard Bank is making to bring people together, to create real solutions to real problems that Africa.
Image below: Stuart Mason inventor of the SpaTap delivering water solutions across Africa