Diarrheal diseases are the second largest cause of death for children, after respiratory infections, and much research has shown that treating household drinking water with dilute chlorine can significantly reduce diarrhea in children. Despite the low cost of available solutions and numerous chlorine education campaigns, only one out of every ten people purchases chlorine each month.
The chlorine dispenser system includes a simple, low-cost water treatment system that allows individual users to treat their water with the correct dose of chlorine after it has been collected from the source. In pilot programs, we found evidence that over half of households in these communities were benefiting since they tested positive for chlorine.
By reducing chronic diarrhea in children, the long term impact of this program includes a reduction in child mortality rates and an increase in overall nutrition as well as increased resistance to infection, physical growth, and cognitive development. There is also evidence that chronic diarrhea has negative long term impacts on education and income, and so a reduction in diarrhea would multiply the initial impact of chlorine dispensers over the long-run.