I am so thrilled that this actually works!

After a few false starts (the first hose was too big and positioned too high on the bucket), today I made a sand water filter that works beautifully.

Check out this water filter made from a 5 gallon bucket and layers of rocks, pebbles, and sand!  Thanks so much to my uncle, Doug Shields, who did the research and sent me the plans for this simple water filter that seems perfect for taking to the villages.

When I showed my good friend and house helper, Mariam, the completed filter, she agreed that it was good for use in the villages.  Then after a pause, she clucked her tongue and let a slight chuckle ripple off of the Kiswahili word, “Raha” (joy).  My feelings exactly.

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Talk about “bring your child to work day!”  Who’s project is this, anyway?

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Ok, so never mind that she is holding a piece of trash and her face is dirty.

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Addie taking it all in.

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…And we’ve got clean water!   (Well, almost.  It takes two weeks until the bio-layer (good bacteria) set up house and guarantee drinkable water.)

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Water is such a beautiful thing!

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What we started with–cloudy, dirty water.

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What came out the other end right away!  In two weeks, this water will be even more clean after the bio-film is established.

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Another beautiful sight–our friend Mariam is back at work after a long break due to a hurt hip.  Thank you all who have been praying for her.  She is in good spirits and working harder than ever (even though we tell her to take it easy on the hip!).

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The final product.

Next, I will let the water filter sit for two weeks, filling it every day with fresh water, in order to let the bio layer set up.  After that the ultimate test is to drink the water!  When we have all of this figured out, we will take the filter to the villages in order to teach our friends how to make them.  This is a great time to bring the sand filter to the villages, as it is starting to be the rainy season, the season when the rate of diarrheal illnesses increase tremendously due to sanitation and contamination problems.  Availability of clean drinking water is a primary factor for good health.

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