What is the social/environmental problem/issue that this project will address?
Across the developing world one in five children die before their 5th birthday, mostly from easily preventable causes – a daily tragedy for families, a terrible burden on developing countries and an indictment on us as 21st century citizens. Whilst corporate products reach remote markets, simple medicines don’t reach rural clinics, their stockrooms often stand empty and local stalls don’t have the social products people need on sale. Awareness of low-cost, simple life-saving cures is often low.
Can you give us some statistics on this problem?
WHO/UNICEF (Oct 2009) say 20% of under fives are killed by diarrhoea: more than AIDS, malaria and measles combined. Distribution problems and poor knowledge are worse in rural areas. Up to 61% of children (71% in Africa) currently go without simple, recommended life-saving treatments offered by Oral Rehydration Salts (ORS). A 5% improvement in child survival rates can raise economic growth by one percentage point a year over a decade. 60–80% of people in developing countries first seek treatment for fever at small stalls or local practitioners – but stock levels of simple, effective treatments can be poor or non-existent.
What is your solution?
“ColaLife” AidPods carry simple medicines securely, fitting in the space between the necks of bottles in drinks crates. We are brokering partnerships between local bottlers, health agencies (who will pack ColaLife Aidpods with whatever is required), and hauliers or small entrepreneurs who carry the crates, and linking them with clinics, health projects or private stalls that need stock. Mobile telephony will track stock and offer micro-payments to the small-scale distributors for safe delivery of every AidPod. AidPods add little weight and minimal logistics issues; they can be returnable with the bottles and crates or have a secondary use.
How will you deliver this?
We will deliver the project through the following steps:
- Partnership development and a fieldwork project to test the ColaLife model in the field, a precursor to a fully costed pilot programme.
- Documentary filming and producing a showreel of issues and stories
- Awareness raising workshops with young people in the UK and other developed countries
- Manufacturing prototype AidPods, based on a range of innovative designs
- Investigating and developing the production of related merchandising, educational and ‘statement’ products for fund-raising (eg buy one give one health packs to be marketed in western countries, to raise both awareness and funds)