Access to Water for 500 Rural Indian Families

by Dalit Freedom Network Vetted since 2018 Top Ranked Effective Nonprofit


844 Million don't have clean water close to home, about 1 in 9 people in the world. Many rural Indian women and girls travel at least half a mile to reach a safe water source, taking up 25% of a women's day. Water is HEAVY. A woman or girl would carry 20KG each trip several times a day. A WaterWheel cuts down on the trips, eases the burden and saves time, which can be used more productively. Instead of carrying water, a girl can go to school. More water also means improved hygiene and health.

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In much of rural India it is often necessary to walk 2-3 miles or more every day to fetch water and in the dry season; it is not uncommon to walk much further. The traditional method of carrying water - with a 20-liter pot on the head - can severely damage the spine, causing severe pain and even leading to complications during childbirth. Not only are the health impacts serious but water collection and household chores are one of the primary reasons for low school attendance amongst girls.


The WaterWheel is a 45-liter rolling drum that moves 3-4 times more water than possible using traditional methods, decreasing the amount of time spent by up to 60%. It is a low-cost, mobile solution that doubles the reach of existing water infrastructure such as wells and easily adapts to lifestyle, environment, and time of year, allowing users to move between sources of water according to season and availability. Using WaterWheels can help empower families to lift them out of poverty.

Long-Term Impact

675 families given access to a WaterWheel since 2014. Results are encouraging - families saving up to 2 hours daily, and men starting to share the burden of water collection. Women able to use time productively to earn more income, girls can now focus on their studies. Useing a Waterwheel can empower, educate, and improve the health of women and girls. The project is focusing on supporting families in rural communities in Rajasthan and West Bengal especially during the times of summer drought.


2016 Update from the WaterWheel project
Roll With Us - showing the Waterwheels in Action!
Project report archive from first phase of project

Organization Information

Dalit Freedom Network

Location: Virginia Beach, VA - USA
Website: http:/​/​
Facebook: Facebook Page
Twitter: @DALITnetwork
Project Leader:
Jacque Cork
Virginia Beach, VA United States

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