Ethiopia: The two euro shower How a simple canister can be turned into a shower

The new showers have heralded a radical change towards better hygiene and consequently less disease.

How a simple canister can be turned into a shower

Munich, 30 November 2017.  Sometimes a small invention can change the world. In this case it is a plastic shower head in Ethiopia. In just a few easy steps it can be screwed onto a normal water canister. The canister is then hung upside down on a beam and when a small lever is turned, water pours from the shower head: a simple principle with an enormous effect.

In the project regions of Menschen für Menschen – Karlheinz Böhm’s Ethiopia Aid the “jerry can shower”, named after the English term for water canister, is currently turning the Ethiopian world upside down. And the shower head comes with an extremely low price tag: two euros a piece. They are still being delivered from Germany, but Menschen für Menschen is searching for an Ethiopian manufacturer.

Wherever the employees of Menschen für Menschen set up showers in the back yards of farming families, they are greeted with enthusiasm. Hitherto, daily personal hygiene was ­­– for lack of alternatives – hardly more than a ‘cat lick’. The new showers have heralded a radical change towards better hygiene and consequently less disease.

But besides for cooking, washing or animals, it is only possible to use water for taking a shower if the wells are located in the near vicinity. In many cases the task of fetching water twice a day from the nearest well – often a walk of several hours – is still assumed by girls and women. At 20 to 25 litres of drinking water per journey there is not much left for showers.

In an effort to improve the water supplies in rural Ethiopia, together with the local population Karlheinz Böhm’s Ethiopia Aid constructs hand-pumped wells, spring developments, collecting basins for rainwater or entire water supply systems at centrally accessible places

 

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Press speaker Lisa Kerscher

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