Charity of the Week: 2011 Fight for Air Climb

American Lung Association Fight for Air Climb 2011This #charitytuesday, we are taking a break from Water Charities to pay tribute to our first ever featured “air charity.” The American Lung Association held their first Fight for Air Climb in Cleveland, this past Saturday, March 5, 2011. Climbers, walkers, runners, firefighters and supporters of the ALA challenged themselves by climbing the 42 flights of stairs in Terminal Tower (804 steps total), in an effort to raise money to support the fight against lung disease. The goal was to raise $80,000 to support lung health, research and advocacy in Northern Ohio. Together they raised over $40,000, and the option to donate is still available on the Cleveland Fight for Air Climb event website.

Fight for Air Climbs are unique events for the ALA, taking place in large towers in cities across the US. Lung cancer is the number one cancer killer in America, and the ALA is dedicated to helping people know what is needed to manage and take control of asthma and other chronic respiratory ailments. We at Filters Fast are dedicated to this cause as well, and know that indoor air quality can be a key factor in the development of chronic lung illness. Take care of yourself by making sure your environment is free from harmful air pollutants. Clean regularly and change your air filters on a consistent basis. You and your family may also want to consider investing in one or several room air purifiers for your home, especially if you suffer from allergies or asthma.

Show your support publicly, by signing up for a Fight for Air Climb in a city near you.

Water Charity of the Week: An-Tiki and WaterAid

antiki raft made of water pipesOn Sunday January 30, a crew of seniors, aged 56 to 84, set sail on the An-Tiki, a raft constructed of water pipes. The purpose of their 70-day, 2,800-mile voyage: To raise 50,000 pounds for WaterAid, an international, nonprofit organization that partners with local organizations in 26 countries in Asia, Africa and parts of the Pacific Region to implement safe water, sanitation and hygiene education in rural and urban areas. WaterAid helps establish clean water systems, while also enabling families to maintain them, ensuring long-term, sustainable success for all parties involved.

While sailing on saltwater, the An-Tiki crew hopes to raise awareness of the fact that it is fresh water that keeps us alive, but it’s also fresh water that many people in the world lack access to. While on board, the crew will have plenty of water, but will also collect rainwater and convert saltwater into fresh, to remind themselves of its importance to our livelihood. While raising money for clean water, these men also hope to demonstrate that adventure is just as suitable for seniors as it is for youngsters. It is impressive to note that the oldest gentleman in the crew, An-Tiki Captain Anthony Smith, has been a traveling adventurer for nearly all of the 84 years he’s been alive.

The An-Tiki is a testament to the importance of clean water, just as the Plastiki has been a testament to the importance of plastic waste reduction – and we thought this unique effort deserved this week’s spot in our featured water charities, in honor of #charitytuesday on Twitter. To support Antiki in it’s fundraising efforts for WaterAid, make a donation online through the An-Tiki Just Giving page. To track the voyage live online, visit the An-Tiki Yellowbrick Satellite Adventure Tracking page.

Water Charity of the Week – Water is Life

This week, in honor of #charitytuesday, we have chosen to feature Water is Life. I wrote a brief summary of their work in our Water Charities List, but we felt like this was such a unique cause that they deserved a bigger spotlight.

Water is Life Straw

Water is Life has developed a filtration technology that filters dirty water through a straw in three stages. When the straw is immersed in water (like a normal drinking straw), it filters particles, membranes and molecules in the first chamber. Then as the water is sipped through the remaining chambers, an iodine filtration system eliminates disease, and charcoal grates remove any bad tastes to provide fresh, clean, safe water. The system filters particles down to 15 microns in size.

The Water is Life straw has proven to be effective against waterborne diseases such as typhoid, cholera, dysentery, guinea worm and diarrhea, and each straw filters water for one person for up to an entire year.

However, the straws are just a short-term solution to those that need immediate assistance. 6,500 people – 5,000 of whom are children – die daily due to the lack of access to clean water. Water is Life distributes the straws as a temporary fix, while they work to develop long-term sustainable solutions like water wells, sand filters and other technology, combined with hygiene and sanitation assistance in each village.

If you would like to donate to Water is Life, you may do so directly on the website. Each straw costs $10. Volunteers may also get involved by hosting  a fundraising event, or by joining a Water is Life team and traveling to distribute straws in Kenya, Ghana, Haiti and other countries.

Stay tuned to learn more about a special charity project that Filters Fast will be hosting in the coming months. In the meantime, promote the Water is Life cause to your friends by sharing this post on Facebook and Twitter!