In Bolivia, nearly 30,000 children's lives could be saved each year with increased access to clean drinking water, increased use of soap, and implementation of a more robust national hand washing education campaign! A recent UNICEF-Emory University research study revealed that only 32% of schools nationwide have access to handwashing facilities and only 61% of schools have sanitation systems of any kind. The public health problems associated with this lack of appropriate hygiene infrastructure abound- from food poisoning and diarrhea to staph infections and increased spreading of infectious diseases. Additionally, students often miss more school as a result of these hygiene-related sicknesses. This statistic was one of the primary reasons SoapBox Soaps teamed up with several local non-profits in Cochabamba, Bolivia to construct a pedal-powered soap mixer for a rural school. The school has been producing soap for awhile, but the "bicimaquina" (bike machine) will increase the efficiency of the soap making and the quality of the soap. The school will then sell their product to the local municipality for distribution to other schools in the region that so desperately need it as well as use it in school.
(Soluciones Simples que Salvan Vidas) is a private, independent, nonprofit institution that works to promote solutions to improve access to safe water and consequently improve the health of rural and peri-urban families in the area.