Most of sub-Saharan Africa still lacks access to improved sanitation.
UNICEF estimates that diarrhea kills one child every 30 seconds.
A simple bar of soap can prevent diarrheal diseases by over 40%.
We understand it will take time, potentially years, just to understand the local culture, ways, and everyday life in these villages. The foundation of a relationship with these communities will first begin with health educational awareness programs and eventually workshops to teach villagers the trade of soap making. We're prepared to commit the time and effort to achieve our long-term goal of "bringing antiseptic resources to everyone."
All of our donated bars are individually stamped with:
“I am the way, the truth, and life.” John 14:6
After b.a.r.e soaps was founded in 2012, we took on some of these immediate needs projects. Within a year, we were able to use funds to purchase vitamins that would be distributed to the children of the Carepoint three times a week. Soap was also provided to the site upon various teams’ return, though we are moving towards a model of purchasing locally made soaps to support small businesses in Kaberamaido.
At one specific point in 2014, Kaberamaido suffered a Hepatitis B outbreak. As a result, we diverted funds to immediately support Hepatitis B vaccinations. We have also been able to provide sanitation lessons that include the importance and instruction of hand washing. Additionally, we have also been able to support Kaberamaido’s local economy by purchasing locally made custom leather shoes for every child.
While we recognize the importance of immediate needs, we also firmly believe in long-term sustainable projects. In 2014, we contributed to funds that were used to purchase land, directed to cultivate crops. Any additional crops would be sold and that income would be directed back to the Carepoint. In 2015, we matched up to $1,000 for the ‘Change Their Story’ Christmas campaign that our partnering church, Point Community Church, ran (members from this church directly sponsor each child in the Carepoint). This campaign included funds that were used to purchase one goat for every child. Because goats reproduce easily, the hope is that these goats would multiply and enable the children and their family to sell the goats to buy other livestock, such as cows, to help with farming.
Currently, we are working on micro-finance loans that would be able to assist a group of local entrepreneurial women whom are interested in starting their own businesses.
Partnering with Sundara Fund
In 2016, we partnered with Sundara Fund, a nonprofit which enables the repurposing of used hotel soaps to be rebatched and redistributed to local communities and health clinics. We funded Sundara’s Kalwa Slum’s initiative by employing 3 women with the objective to:
The soap will be distributed every month to 500 migrant school children living in the surrounding slums, along with a basic health care and hygiene training aspect. Similarly, 500 migrant slum women will receive the recycled soap when they come to the local Shravan health clinic for free health care services. This will be done along with awareness training on the use of soap in good hand and body hygiene practices. Together, these activities will help improve the health and wellbeing of children and women of Kalwa East and reduce the occurrence of frequent hygiene related illness that currently plagues this slum community.
Since we started b.a.r.e. soaps, we have saved over 21,000 feet of plastic by using plantable paper to wrap our bar soaps as of November 2016.
We source our plantable paper from Botanical Paperworks. Our sleeves are embedded with wildflower seeds, including Bird's Eye, Clarkia, Black Eyed Susan, Sweet Alyssum, English Daisy, Catchfly and Snap Dragon. All you need is some good soil, water, and sunlight for planting. Simply wet the plantable paper so that it is damp and plant it in the soil. Like all plants, make sure the soil is receiving enough water and sunlight.
Make this into a fun activity with your family, kids, and friends. Be sure to share pictures of your wildflowers on our Facebook page!