Total loan: $1,600

Sonephanxai Group

Pakkading District, Borlikhamxai Province, Bolikhamsai Province, Lao PDR / Personal Use

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A loan helped to purchase TerraClear water filters so they can have access to safe drinking water.

Sonephanxai Group's story

Hienthong is excited that he, like his group members, was able to purchase a water filter. The silver nitrate-infused ceramic element removes and destroys bacteria and similar agents of water borne diseases. Hienthong's village takes water from relatively shallow wells and from local streams; however, the water from natural sources in his village is dirty and unsuitable for drinking without treatment. Even though some people in the village, including Hienthong, are able to buy bottled water, the water filter increases the disposable income available to users by decreasing the amount of money used to purchase bottled water. Hienthong and other filter users also decrease the amount of money spent to boil water by purchasing less charcoal and decreasing the time spent foraging for firewood. Hienthong's filter is guaranteed for 2 years, though most users find the filter works from 3-5 years. Most families report a threefold reduction in diarrhea after they begin using the filter. Increasing time available for productive work also improves a family's income and overall well-being.