DELAWARE, Ohio – The burden of hauling water can be enormous for women and children in developing countries. To get this precious resource, people often need to walk an average of 3.5 miles. For people in water-stressed regions, carrying a pail or bucket for this long distance is inefficient and cumbersome.
PackH2O aims to alleviate this burden. PackH2O is an innovative and life-changing method of carrying water for people living in areas where water is scarce. PackH2O is essentially a water carrying backpack. Its collapsible structure is made from industrial-grade woven polypropylene and holds 5.3 gallons of water a time. It holds slightly more than the typical water holding jerry can, yet weighs far less and has an even smaller carbon footprint. PackH2O also has a removable liner that can be sanitized with exposure to sunlight for a safe way to store water. This backpack relieves the stress of carrying gallons of water by distributing weight across the user’s back. Thus, the PackH2Ominimizes water loss and makes the journey to water far more efficient.
The idea for PackH20 came shortly after the earthquake in Haiti in 2010. Greif CEO David Fischer realized that one of the key hindrances to providing clean water to the world was the bulky and dirty cans used to carry it. Fischer then realized that his company, Greif, a global leader in industrial packaging, had the expertise to develop better methods for carrying water. In alignment with the corporation’s commitment to sustainability, Fischer than worked with other NGOs and developers to construct and test PackH2O.
Women from Haiti were some of the first users of water backpack. Greif, alongside other NGOs including the Clinton Global Initiative and Habitat for Humanity released a usable backpack in 2011. Since then many other agencies and nonprofits have partnered to distribute PackH2O around the world. Today, tens of thousands of PackH2O are being used throughout the globe.
– Grace Zhao
Sources: PackH2O, Greif