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Join the Pipe

Join the Pipe is a social enterprise dedicated to a fair distribution of clean drinking water worldwide. Our goal is to make clean drinking water accessible to anyone, anywhere in the world, whilst promoting the usage of tap water and discourage the use of polluting pre-packaged water, like disposable plastic water bottles, which have a large negative impact on the environment. Every day 500,000 plastic bottles end up in landfills in the Netherlands while the Dutch tap water is among the best in the world. Join the Pipe works closely with cities, businesses, NGO’s, schools, sports clubsand festivals to help with the implementation of a sustainablewater policy. We also encourage people to drink tapwater ‘on the go’ instead of bottled water, by installing public outdoor tapwaterstations together with the help of watercompanies. Of the proceeds from the Join the Pipe products, such as sustainable BPA-free water bottles designed like elements of a waterpipe (_Winner of the Dutch Design
& Sustainability Award 2010_), decanters and water tap stations – of which around 250 have been placed throughout the Netherlands, waterprojects are funded in developing countries such as Asia and Africa. Join the Pipe increases access to safe sustainable public tap water at schools and peri-urban communities in Africa at an affordable price, improving the water and sanitation situation in Africa, which leads to improving hygiëne amongst school children. Join the Pipe works evidence based. The progress and completion of our water and sanitation projects is tracked on the website. www.join-the-pipe.org.

Which other Creative Sectors has the SME worked with?
Design, Architecture, Music, Contemporary Arts

Which other Growth Sectors has the SME worked with?
Environment & Energy, Retail & Leisure, Financial Services, Education, Transport & Logistics, Catering

Were any relationships rewarding?

Yes! Join the Pipe works closely with some of the water companies by promoting tapwater. In return the water companies help to install tapwater stations free of charge in their service area. Most cities have a councillor responsible for either Sustainability or Health & Sports who often take the lead in placing a tap in their community.

We’ve just started a pilot with the Railway Company NS , with placing tap stations at the railway stations and we’ve just organised the very first Festival on Tap (Theaterfestival De Parade) which was held in the 4 major cites in the Netherlands (Rotterdam, The Hague, Amsterdam and Utrecht) and attracted an audience of around 270.000 higher income and socially aware people.

Together with Dutch watercompany Vitens and the Schools we are trying to convince kids that water is the prefererd drink. Of theDutchchildrenbetween 10 and12years22% is overweight.Thisis mainly causedby the consumption of sugary fizzy drinks. By installing our tap water in schools and encouraging school children to drink tap water more instead of the sugary fizzy drinks andin combination withsports. An awareness was created among school children in the Netherlands. To create more awareness wewouldlike to instal Join the Pipe Tapwater stations around allsports fields andplaygrounds. This way we do not only compbat obesityin the Netherlands, butchildren in Africa andBangladesh, whereevery day5,000 childrendie from theeffects of contaminateddrinking water.

Together with the African NGO’s we also improved the water and sanitation situation in schools in Africa by installing our tap station and teaching the children how to wash their hands after using the toilets. Join the Pipe also installed self-closing taps in some schools in Africa, this lead to save 93% of wasted water and reduce the schools water bill by 60%.

The tap waterin the Netherlandsis of top quality, it’s durable and it reduceswaste.Every dayin the Netherlands500,000plasticbottlesthrown away, which alsoend upaslitteron sports fields, whilethe tap water inthe Netherlands is amongthebest in Europe. ThetapsofJoin the Pipe arevandalresistant,low maintenanceand can be leftstanding during Winter.

How does the SME think it could benefit from other sectors' input?

Join the Pipe thinks it will benefit from other sectors input of innovation and knowledge sharing. E.g. crowd-funding, “in-kind” contributions of resources. This will hopefully lead to cross-collaboration and raising awareness about the benefits of tapwater.

What can the SME offer other sectors?

Join the pipe helps with the implementation of a sustainablewater policy. Drinking tapwater is cheap, environmentally friendly and good for your health. It only has benefits, people become healthier and we help to mimimize waste. On top of this we fund water projects in developing countries, so it’s a win-win-win situaiton!

ThetapsofJoin the Pipearevandalresistant,low maintenanceand can be leftstanding during Winter and at all times.

By funding projects in African countries we help to increase the quality and availability of water, improve sanitation in schools and communities, increase capacity in making water and sanitation more sustainable.

To what extent would the SME be prepared to share information?

Join the Pipe is open to share its information with other organizations or individuals who are interested.  It’s operates evidence based progress of the projects which we fund and support and can be tracked on the website. Of the Join the Pipe bottles we sell, 1/3 is donated to water and sanitation projects in Africa and Asia, and in every tapwater station we sell a donation of 350 euros goes to support a project in Africa and Asia.

How would the SME describe its potential for cross innovation?

Join the pipe helps with the implementation of a sustainablewater policy. Drinking tapwater is cheap, environmentally friendly and good for your health and this counts for people all across Europe. By expanding into other Eurpean cities we can grow our network of tap water stations worldwide, improve people’s helth (reduce obesity) and reduce the amount of waste that ends up in the Ocean and we all suffer from. Our concept only has benefits, people become healthier and we help to mimimize waste.

On top of this we fund water projects in developing countries so we increase access to safe drinking water and better hygiene. The self-closing taps we use for our projects are unbreakable, impossible to steal, easy to use and equip with a water meter pitch for appropriate meters and filtering options. JTP taps are much higher than other taps in Africa, its very easy for drinking or filling bottles, the self-closing systems makes no waste of water and it does not leak like the other taps on the market.The built in flow control will give the same amount of water from a low pressure storage tank as a high pressure main pipe system.We install our water saving self-closing water taps that save up to 93% of the wasted water in the toilets for hand washing.

This leads to overall reduction of about 60% of water bill for schools in Africa. The stylish Join the pipe taps as well as educating the kids makes the kids use taps for different purposes, this leads to creation of a more sustainable use of the water. Our approach has helped to strengthen the assurance for financial sustainability in all our pilot implementations in some parts of Africa.

Out of the 11 Cross Innovation Partner Cities, are there any particular cities with which the SME would like to form a new relationship?

Are there any particular organisations outside the SMEs home country, with which it would like to connect?

Other European City Councils, Ministers, Water companies, Health Insurance companies, Sport Clubs, Festival Organisers. But we’d also like to connect with USAID- London, UNICEF – Berlin and WASH – Kenya.

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