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Dylan commented on The OHorizons Wood Mold for BioSand Filter Production

Hi Shane, thanks for checking out our entry and for your feedback!

In Ecuador, Mali, and Bangladesh we piloted our Wood Mold. We didn’t however pilot this financial model. We are a foundation that primarily targets local organizations who can implement our innovation and service their local communities. Our implementation partners utilize our technical, monitoring, evaluation, and sometimes financial resources to build the OHorizons Wood Molds and then distribute the Concrete BioSand Filters to the end users: local families and households. In Ecuador, the Wood Mold project was financed via a grant from the Rotary Foundation. In Bangladesh, we are providing the project funding. In all of our pilots, the end users have had a buy-in to receive a filter. We’ve utilized our implementation partners’ intimate familiarity with the local people’s financial ability to set the contribution at a level that is accessible to all, but still requires an investment.

We believe that this operation has the potential to be done through a market-based approach. The $35 consumer cost of the filters in India is a simple estimate based on our work in the Satkhira District of SW Bangladesh, which borders India. The cost of the filters could actually rise or fall based on the local prices of the materials (concrete, crushed rock sand, gravel, outlet tubing, lid, diffuser plates, plywood, paint, and what type and size of clean water storage container is used) and scale of the business. Even though the clean water storage container is most likely the single most expensive piece and it isn’t necessary for the filter to work, we would advocate that it would need to be purchased in connection with the BioSand Filter to effectively decrease the likelihood of recontamination after the water had been filtered.

The two main launch challenges we foresee are finding a social entrepreneur willing to take the chance to run this business and figuring out the best location to implement this business. Lots of factors would need to go into identifying the location including: locating where this solution is suitable for the local households based on their water source and then making sure that in this location there is enough demand and financial ability in terms of the end-users, that they would spend their money on this product.

I’ll plan on updating our organization’s introduction to make some of these points clearer.  Thanks again for your feedback. Let me know if you have any other questions or ideas.