Archive for February, 2010

PlayPumps by Harry Period 7

Posted in 1 on February 25, 2010 by mrbgeography


In Africa a child dies every fifteen seconds because of a water-borne illness. This problem affects everyone in Africa. Many associations are trying to find ways to solve them. One solution is The PlayPump, (the inventor is not known). This pump combines work with play. As children spin the dial on it water is pumped up from underground streams. It goes into a tank on top of the wheel. Then, it runs through a pipe to a water tower. This tower cleans the water then sends it to a faucet, ready to be used.

You’ve seen the part about the pump that is labor. Now, see the part that is all fun. While this pump brings up clean water the children that are turning the wheel are having a blast. For most this is the only playground equipment they have ever seen in their entire lives. For all; this is the most fun they have ever had. That is how the PlayPump merges work with play.

So far, more than 800 PlayPumps are being used in four African countries, making water available for almost two million people. The pumps are made by a South African company called Outdoor Fabrication and Steelworks. Another company, Roundabout Outdoor, trains local teams who fix and check up on the pumps. Each pump system costs 14,000 dollars.

I feel that this invention is amazing. Even though each system is pricey there are many companies sponsoring the company that makes them. This solves the problem about having water but not being able to get to it. It also solves the problems about having to take a long walk and the strenuous act of pumping. Now where there was no pump there is one. This pump will help take down water scarcity.

Original article by National Geographic for Kids.

Discussion Questions:
1. How does this pump merge work and play?
2. How would you feel if you were a child in Africa and your town received a PlayPump?
3. What other countries could benefit from the use of these?