A farm school outside of Wellington has received a Community LifeStraw unit which will ensure its learners, for the first time, have access to safe drinking water. The installation took place ahead of International World Water Day, which happens on 22 March 2016.

Provided by the Sea Point Rotary Club’s safe water project and Aqua4Life, this Community LifeStraw unit will provide the learners of Berg River Primary School with safe drinking water for up to seven years. The Community LifeStraw is a high-volume, point-of-use community water purifier with built-in safe storage. The unit provides microbiologically safe drinking water for schools, health facilities, workplaces and community settings.

According to Dr Tony Davidson of Sea Point Rotary, the children of Berg River Primary often suffered from illnesses associated with unsafe drinking water prior to the installation of the LifeStraw. “The high incidence of absenteeism as a result of these illnesses was one of the main reasons that Berg River Primary was selected as a recipient of the Community LifeStraw. When we first heard of how unsafe drinking water was affecting the education of these children, it was clear just how much good this installation would do.”

A second LifeStraw was also installed at a nearby local community of 450 people, who have also been without safe drinking water. To date, the Sea Point Rotary Club’s Safe Water project has provided safe drinking water to more than 6 communities in the Cape Winelands area.

In addition to Rotarians donating to Rotary’s Safe Water Project, everyday South Africans from across the country have also contributed towards these communities by purchasing Relate  bracelets. These funds are also used in funding of entrepreneurial projects associated with the LifeStraw units.

Relate Bracelets makes handmade beaded bracelets in support of more than 70 causes, one of which is Rotary’s Safe Water Project. Proceeds from the sale of each bracelet support not only the relevant causes, but also the seniors in impoverished communities who supplement their pensions by threading the beads. Many of these senior citizens care for their grandchildren and others orphaned by HIV/Aids. Relate’s younger staff members, who close and pack the bracelets, also benefit with training in their chosen fields to further their careers beyond Relate.

Relate Bracelets are instantly recognisable by their signature “R” bead, a sign of their transparency and accountability. The purchase of just one bracelet, only R39.00, is equivalent to purchasing 2000 litres of clean and safe water.

About Relate Bracelets:

Connect to your cause. Buy a bracelet. Change lives.

Relate is the thread that connects us – a simple concept that creates great change.

Proudly 100% not-for-profit Relate Bracelets empowers and uplifts by helping the less fortunate create better lives for themselves – over 60% of their income goes to social upliftment and credible causes.

Proceeds from sales of the bracelets are invested into: giving township seniors dignity, companionship and earnings that most use to support their families and AIDS-orphaned grandchildren;  giving disadvantaged youngsters earnings and skills training to enable them to achieve their life goals; and assisting disadvantaged fledgling organisations to grow to their potential, in turn creating economic and growth opportunities for others.

Additionally, Relate Bracelets have donated funds to over 70 causes to date.

Only Relate bracelets have their trademark ‘R’ bead, which is their commitment to transparency, accountability, and operating similarly to a public company, with financial statements summarised on their website.

Relate thanks all of those involved in their movement for change because many small actions, even just the purchase of a single bracelet for a specific cause close to a person’s heart, can lead to big change.

Neil Robinson, Chief Executive Officer of Relate Bracelets, asks: “What if every employed South African bought just one bracelet each year?”

“That would mean more than quarter of a billion Rand would go towards these causes annually, with this easy to do, small spend impacting on our country in a big way. It could result in a big dent in our country’s problems.”

Relate, founded by Lauren Gillis, became a Trust in 2010 and has since raised R30million, having sold almost 2million bracelets in support of more than 70 worthwhile causes in health, education, conservation, social upliftment, children, and empowerment. And in the process Relate has created earning opportunities for more than 350 people.

 This article was first published on 16 March 2016 by Spice4Life and is available online here.