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December 18, 2019 | |Post a Comment

first_imgMore than 50,000 Hippo Rollers have been distributed in more than 29 countries, changing the lives of millions of people, according to Play Your Part ambassador Darren Smith.The Hippo Roller is the recipient of the Frost & Sullivan’s 2016 African Rural Portable Water Solutions Product Leadership Award. (Images: The Hippo Roller Project)Melissa JavanIn a conversation with a teenage girl, Grant Gibbs, executive director of the Hippo Roller Project, realised that the basic human need for dignity could be easily overlooked. He describes the conversation with this girl as one of his highlights of the project.“In South Sudan, where I interviewed a teenage girl, I asked why she liked the Hippo Roller so much and she responded without hesitation: ‘Because now I can look like a city girl.’She explained that she could not braid her hair to look attractive when carrying heavy buckets of water on her head,” he says.Hippo Roller, a South African-made drum to transport water, allows users to transport five times as much water as a 20-litre bucket. Instead of carrying the standard 20-litre bucket on your head, the Hippo Roller is rolled on the ground. They have been distributed in more than 29 countries.The project was established in 1994 to tackle the lack of access to water, a challenge in rural communities in South Africa.Darren Smith, who handles the donor and media engagement for Hippo Roller, is a Play Your Part ambassador. Play Your Part is a national movement by Brand South Africa to encourage active citizenship and social cohesion.Darren Smith of the Hippo Roller Project says the initiative leverages its relationships with sponsors, corporate partners and NGOs to provide African communities with an immediate and winning water solution.Brand South Africa writer Melissa Javan talked to Smith and Gibbs about the Hippo Roller Project.Melissa Javan: Why did you get involved in this project?Grant Gibbs: I was employed as a technician and sales executive at Infotech from 1987 to 1998, and during that period I became a part-time distributor of the Hippo Roller.Infotech persuaded me to pursue this option with them, and together we formed Infotech’s reconstruction and development programme department in 1994. A little later the Hippo Water Roller Trust was formed. Though Infotech decided to close the department (and trust) in 1998, I chose to continue and have been managing the Hippo Roller in my personal capacity ever since.Darren Smith: I have followed Grant’s journey with the Hippo Roller almost since its inception more than 20 years ago. When the opportunity arose to join the team, I jumped at it. Personally and professionally the whole reason to be of the Hippo Roller energised me. “Simple ideas. Changing lives.” This is our “why”. This gets us up in the mornings.MJ: Who are the beneficiaries?DS: Millions of women and children struggle daily to collect water. It is for this group that the Hippo Roller has an immediate and profound impact. It significantly improves their ability to collect more water, more efficiently, and empowers them to spend more time on education and other important tasks in the home and community.Grant Gibbs is a Play Your Part ambassador.MJ: How old is the Hippo Roller?DS: The Hippo Roller itself was conceptualised in 1991 by Pettie Petzer and Johan Jonker, two South Africans who grew up on farms and experienced the national water crisis first-hand. They saw people carrying heavy buckets of water on their heads for kilometres every day.With roots in these water-dependent, resource-poor environments, Petzer and Jonker were familiar with the struggle to access water that millions of Africans experience daily.Jonker noticed that workers on his father’s farm collected empty 20-litre plastic containers to use to fetch water. These containers are typically of poor quality and not very durable. He thought there had to be a better way.As co-inventor Petzer describes it, the original idea was based on a wheelbarrow including a moulded tank for a low centre of gravity. In trying to get their concept going, one of the first problems they encountered was the price of the wheel itself. It was the most expensive component.Petzer thought: “Let’s put the water inside the wheel!” And so, the Hippo Water Roller was born. Initially branded the Aqua Roller, it received its first design award in 1992.MJ: How does it work?DS: The Hippo Roller is made from UV stabilised linear low-density polyethylene and is designed to cope with the rough surfaces found in rural areas. The drum’s volume is 90 litres and it has a large opening (135mm) for easy filling and cleaning, yet it is also small enough to prevent toddlers from falling inside.MJ: How do you choose beneficiaries?DS: Our experience has been that it remains important for the community leaders and the community itself to be fully consulted and engaged in the process of introducing the Hippo Roller.There are seldom enough to go around in any given community, and so they are diligently allocated and distributed to the neediest first (women, child-headed homes, the elderly or frail) by the local community leaders.We have discovered too, that a Hippo Roller is never idle. Often it is shared widely, and works hard, each Hippo Roller potentially meeting the needs of dozens of people. In a recent project in Mozambique, for example, 30 Hippo Rollers are serving the needs of nearly 4,000 people.Residents in Malawi using the Hippo Roller.MJ: How do they benefit?DS: Time is our most precious resource. By addressing the difficulty of retrieving water, the Hippo Roller simply buys more time. In turn, that time can be put to more productive use for education, social development and local entrepreneurship.MJ: What do you mean when you call Hippo Roller “a social enterprise”?DS: As a social enterprise, the Hippo Roller is a for-profit business that seeks to be sustainable. It works closely with NGOs, corporate social investment sponsors, government departments and other donor organisations and individuals.And on that note – of sustainability – we expect Hippo Roller’s business model to scale by an order of magnitude in the coming years.MJ: What has been your highlight so far?GG: There is not one “most rewarding” experience. Literally each recipient of a Hippo Roller glows with pride on receiving it. The Hippo Rollers are jealously guarded and highly prized possessions, which change the lives of their owners.That said, they are shared widely within the communities too, and it would be fair to say that a Hippo Roller rarely sits idle. While we don’t often get to see the results first hand, stories from all over the world reach us, and it is always incredibly humbling.DS: There is no single highlight that springs to mind. Quite simply, every time we engage with people in communities struggling with access to water, I am moved to action.MJ: How can people get involved?DS: Many current community development initiatives around the world, with a completely different focus from water, can be more effective in the communities they serve just by improving access to water.Even NGOs that install wells and boreholes could serve a wider territory by including Hippo Rollers from the same borehole. Water is something that most of us just don’t think about. But for millions, it’s all they think about, every single day.A first step then, would be to visit HippoRoller.org. Even if you can’t donate, sharing the knowledge and spreading the word goes a long way to keeping the visibility of the water crisis high.MJ: How do you use social media to spread your message?DS: Historically, the need has found us. Over the years, people working closely with rural communities have contacted us. Corporate social investment (CSI) professionals have contacted us.We’ve put the two groups in touch with each other, operating as an innovation partner and providing a conduit for sponsored Hippo Rollers to reach communities in need.Since the advent of the web, and more recently the social era, we’ve actively promoted the Hippo Roller via its web presence, a community newsletter, social media platforms and at events across the globe.The Hippo Roller has been covered by all manner of print, digital, broadcast and social media influencers, all of which have helped keep our profile reasonably high.This visibility is primarily aimed at the NGOs, CSI professionals, government departments and other donor organisations and individuals with whom we engage, rather than the communities or recipients themselves.MJ: Why should all South Africans play their part in their communities and be brand ambassadors of South Africa?DS: While Play Your Part’s objective is to lift the spirit of the nation by inspiring all South Africans to contribute to positive change, it is primarily by becoming involved and starting “to do” that we can all make a difference. And just as it is with water, every drop counts.Play your part, and let’s keep on rolling.Get involved with Hippo Roller, via its:Website: www.hipporoller.orgEmail: support@hipporoller.orgOr on Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram, Linkedin and TwitterWould you like to use this article in your publication or on your website? See Using Brand South Africa material.last_img read more

December 16, 2019 | |Post a Comment

first_imgThat photo above is from my basement. In case you missed my last article, I just bought a 1961 ranch-style house in Atlanta and am embarking on the wonderful building science adventure of turning it into a high-performance home. Ultimately, I’d like to take it all the way to net-zero energy. My father-in-law, who sold us the house (Thanks, Stewart!), had some work done to improve it several years ago, so that water spot you see above is dry now. It just looks really nasty.Until this week, though, I didn’t know what source of moisture created the spot. Was it rainwater from outdoors leaking in through a penetration in the band joist? Was it a plumbing leak from the nearby kitchen? Was it groundwater climbing up the foundation wall by capillary action and finding an opening at this location?Actually, it was none of those. Let’s peel back the layers and see what we can find. Here’s another photo, this time with the ceiling tile pulled away.Water damage on the original ceiling in our basement.Here you can see that the current dropped ceiling isn’t the original one. At some earlier time, there was wood paneling in that corner where the moisture damage is. Above the paneling, you can see spray foam. But what else is going on up there? Let’s take a look.A supply duct is in the space right above the water damage.Well, there’s more foam, but if you look closely on the left side, you can see a bit of grey metal. That’s part of the duct that goes into the wall and delivers conditioned air to the den above.Ah, now we’re getting somewhere! In summer, that duct gets very cold when the air conditioner runs. And cold surfaces can condense water vapor out of the air if the dew point is high enough.Now, when you run an air conditioner and are able to achieve the ACCA recommended indoor design conditions of 75° F and 50% relative humidity, the dew point is 55° F. (That’s a handy fact for building science types to know, so you might want to remember it.) Also, the temperature of the air coming out of an air conditioner is usually between 55° F and 58° F.So, cold air in the duct at close to or slightly above the design dew point should not present a huge condensation problem. That is, this duct shouldn’t have gotten enough condensation to cause the damage you see in the above photos unless either the duct was much colder than 55° F or the dew point in the room was significantly higher than 55° F.I can guarantee you that duct, a good 20 ft. from the air conditioner, wasn’t much colder than 55° F. So that leaves the humidity much higher than it should have been. But where was the water vapor coming from? Here’s another look above the dropped ceiling.What is the source of the excess humidity that caused the water damage?The moisture-damaged area is in the left center part of the photo above. Those two copper water pipes go to the kitchen. (That 3/4-in. pipe on the left is the culprit responsible for the slow hot water delivery I mentioned in my last article.) Notice that the two pipes go through a gap that’s 1-1/2 in. high. Here’s another view of the gap.The source of the excess humidity was the crawlspaceThrough that gap and on the other side of that wall is a crawlspace. The outside of that part of the house has foundation vents, indicating that the house was built with a vented crawlspace. And anyone who knows a little building science can tell you that vented crawlspaces and the psychrometric chart are not friends. Translation: The vents in crawlspaces don’t solve moisture problems; they create them.That was the source of the moisture. I say “was” because about four years ago, PV Heating & Air (the same company that put the new HVAC system in our office) encapsulated the crawlspace. I don’t know the whole history of the work done on the house, but there’s also a small dehumidifier in the basement so the humidity down there is much better. The dew point in that part of the basement now is running at about 50° F, well below the design dew point.In short, the problem in this basement was that someone back in the history of the house did not understand the first rule for preventing humidity damage:Keep humid air away from cool surfaces.Had they followed that rule, the ceiling tile would still be fine. The wood paneling above it wouldn’t be falling apart. And the duct above wouldn’t have become an accidental dehumidifier.Allison Bailes of Decatur, Georgia, is a speaker, writer, building science consultant, and the author of the Energy Vanguard Blog. You can follow him on Twitter at @EnergyVanguard. All photos courtesy of Energy Vanguard.last_img read more

December 3, 2019 | |Post a Comment

first_imgWest Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Friday welcomed the Andhra Pradesh government’s decision to withdraw ‘general consent’ to the CBI for carrying out raids and investigations in the State. “[Chief Minister] Chandrababu Naidu has rightly barred the entry of CBI in his State… Previously there was no such need but times have changed because instructions are being sent to the CBI from the BJP party office. There are such provisions, we have read the Constitution as well,” Ms. Banerjee said at a core committee meeting of her party in Kolkata.last_img read more

November 29, 2019 | |Post a Comment

first_imgBI on alert for illegally deployed OFWs to Iraq Read Next “We want to give an opportunity for more people to see the games,” he said.READ: SBP starts forming best PH team for 2018 Fiba 3×3 World CupFEATURED STORIESSPORTSWATCH: Drones light up sky in final leg of SEA Games torch runSPORTSLillard, Anthony lead Blazers over ThunderSPORTSMalditas save PH from shutoutPreviously, Fiba 3×3 events were held inside malls. SM Megamall in Mandaluyong served as hosts for the 2014 World Tour Manila Masters, while Robinson’s Place Manila in Ermita had the rights in the 2015 edition.“I think we’ve been very successful holding it in the malls. Almost 4,000 people are watching the games. But now, we chose to move it to a bigger venue,” said Panlilio. Brace for potentially devastating typhoon approaching PH – NDRRMC Miranda, Isip bring leadership to Marinerong Pilipino Trending Articles PLAY LIST 00:50Trending Articles00:50Trending Articles00:50Trending Articles01:29Police teams find crossbows, bows in HK university01:35Panelo suggests discounted SEA Games tickets for students02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City Typhoon Kammuri accelerates, gains strength en route to PH “From a Philippine basketball point of view, that gives an opportunity for the youth to watch the game. From the point of view of SBP and Fiba, we want to see bigger crowds in 3×3 and that’s something we want to deliver to Fiba. Hosting events have put the Philippines in the map and shows that we can host events like this, and that’s the reason we also pushed for the hosting of the 3×3 World Cup.”READ: High expectations for 2018 FIBA 3×3 World Cup hostingGilas Pilipinas backer Ronald Mascariñas of Chooks-to-Go also thinks that this event could break attendance records in the 55,000-seater arena.“It’s in the discussion if we’re going to break the record in attendance. But I think the question there is not if we’re going to break, but how many more times we will. Because Fiba should see how passionate the Filipinos are about basketball. That’s a given,” said the Bounty Agro Ventures Inc. president.The current mark for biggest attendance inside the world’s largest indoor stadium is held by the PBA, set last October 27, 2017 in Game 7 of the 2017 PBA Governors’ Cup Finals where 54,083 fans trooped to the venue.ADVERTISEMENT MOST READ Photo by Tristan Tamayo/ INQUIRER.netCompared to past 3×3 events staged in the country, Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas (SBP) is going big at home as it is set hold the 2018 Fiba 3×3 World Cup at massive Philippine Arena in June.SBP president Al Panlilio feels that it’s time for the halfcourt game to be staged in bigger venues so that it will be seen by bigger crowds.ADVERTISEMENTcenter_img Asian shares slide on weak Japan data; US markets closed LATEST STORIES Kammuri turning to super typhoon less likely but possible — Pagasa Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Do not bring these items in SEA Games venues 8th Top Leaders Forum assessed the progress of public-private efforts in building climate and disaster resilient communities View comments John Lloyd Cruz a dashing guest at Vhong Navarro’s weddinglast_img read more