• With no access to safe sanitary solutions, girls resort to dangerous alternatives like ash, husk, sand, or unsanitised cloth.

  • Period poverty forces 1 of out 5 girls to drop out of school. You can help break that cycle.

Water purification

“Water is Life”, yet over 2 billion individuals across the globe lack access to uncontaminated drinking water and over 800,000 people die annually due to poor drinking water, sanitation and hand hygiene. Access to safe drinking water was declared a human right by the United Nations, but remains a challenge for much of the developing world. Depleting groundwater, lack of proper rainwater harvesting and rising contamination in the groundwater due to sewage and industrial effluent discharge are posing fresh challenges for countries, especially in low-income or resettlement colonies and villages, which are struggling to get safe and affordable water. While the developed world and affluent populations in developing countries depend on purified water and packaged or bottled water, this class of consumer is the minority of the developing population.

Water purification technologies available today tend to be expensive, require high amounts of electricity and waste water as part of the purification process. RO in particular also removes essential minerals from the water. Given the challenges faced by developing nations and water stressed regions of the world, existing technologies have not been sufficiently able to address the growing concern of water safety.

UN SDG 6 calls for available and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all. It is estimated that by 2025, half of the world’s population will be living in water stressed areas, and yet, development of water technologies, such as reverse osmosis, comes hand-in-hand with irresponsible utilization of the existing water sources.

Livinguard has used its textile based technology to create community water purifiers of ​100, 300 and 500 liters per hour capacity​, which can turn microbiologically contaminated water into safe drinking water. The technology reliably removes a broad spectrum of microorganisms, with demonstrated removal rates up to 99.99999% for bacteria, 99.99% for viruses and 99.9% for coliphage. The water filters designed by Livinguard are also equipped with pre-filtration that address other common impurities in water – turbidity, organic contamination and heavy metals. Water purification using Livinguard requires no electricity or chemical dosing for the filtration process, is long-lasting, and thus, highly affordable. To further protect against recontamination in storage tanks, Livinguard has designed ​floating filters that remain in storage tanks, keeping the water clean. These systems waste no water for the purification process and retain the essential minerals present in our water, safeguarding users against future deficiencies and illnesses.

Over the past 6 years, Livinguard has been working tirelessly to improve the standards of living in India. Working with NGOs, international organizations, government and corporate sponsors, Livinguard has ​over 1700 community filters in use across railway stations, hospitals, schools, temples and villages across 12 states in India. Of these, 1,000 filters have been installed in railway stations giving commuters and people from neighbouring towns access to safe water all year round. More than 50 million people in India have access to Livinguard filtered drinking water, beginning a deep rooted change, resulting in ​increased school enrollment and reduced absenteeism, illnesses, and healthcare costs​. Some of our partners include the ​World Health Organization (WHO), Yes Bank, SBI, WOTR, Godrej, Max India, Rotary International, Mahindra, and more.

In addition to creating these filters, Livinguard works with NGOs/ local government in order to create ​sustainable models for continuous access to good water. By making each family contribute to the operations and maintenance charges of the filter, Livinguard helps people empower themselves and stay healthy. Livinguard is also working on models in which an entrepreneur takes ownership of a filter, selling healthy water to their community and earning a sustainable living.
Efforts in Africa are currently underway. To get involved, partner or know more, contact us at info@livinguard.com.



Key Partners

How does it work?

Menstrual Hygiene

Women make up around half the world’s population and spend an average of 60,000 – 65,000 hours of their lives menstruating, and yet, according to a UNICEF study, 1 in 3 girls in South Asia has no idea about menstruation prior to menstruating themselves. Moreover, 48% of girls and women in Iran believe that menstruating is a disease and 45% of girls and women in India believe that menstruation is abnormal. With the taboo and shame culture surrounding the topic of MHM in the past, breaking barriers and improving overall hygiene in the developing world has been a major challenge.

Girls across Africa and Asia miss up to 20% of their education due to insufficient MHM (Menstrual Hygiene Management).

  • Affordability
  • Lack of access
  • Lack of underwear
  • Lack of disposability culture
  • Lack of awareness
  • Patriarchy and money control
  • Cultural stigma – disease, shame, virginity (for tampons and cups)

These are some of the major contributing factors to the low adoption of feminine hygiene products available in the market today. Due to these and more, women and girls are forced to use homemade alternatives such as cloth, ash, sand, paper, leaves, husk and more. These, along with overall lack of hygiene and hand washing, can lead to reproductive and urinary tract diseases and infections.

The women who can afford regular disposable sanitary napkins are unaware that they generate 150 kg of non-biodegradable sanitary waste in their lifetime. In India alone, even with a deplorable 20% market penetration for consumer solutions, non-biodegradable menstrual hygiene material waste is already a whopping 9000 tons per annum; an environmental burden that falls squarely and heavily on the government’s shoulders, and results in incineration costs of hundreds of crores, not to mention the problem of overall environmental impact of so much plastic and waste.

Livinguard has used its technology to create the world’s first line of  washable, reusable, antibacterial, environmentally conscious period panties and sanitary napkins – Saafkins. 

  • Equipped with the Livinguard antimicrobial technology, Saafkins help mitigate the risk of infections and control odour that is usually caused by bacterial buildup.
  • A patented stain release technology helps improve the user experience and reduces the amount of water and soap required for the cleaning process.
  • A leak proof lining, accompanied by high absorbency, allows Saafkins to be used to an entire school or work day, without the need to constantly change.
  • A quick dry technology helps the user feel comfortable and allows for a quick drying process.


Saafkins have been tested for 70 wash performance (approximately 1 year life) under the following criteria:

  1. Absorbency
  2. Soil burial/degradability
  3. Antimicrobial efficacy
  4. Skin Irritation
  5. Cytotoxicity
  6. Stain release

Livinguard teams with NGOs to educate menstruators in villages and towns about proper menstrual hygiene management and the use of Saafkins. Not only do they improve users’ quality of life by helping prevent infections, they are highly affordable and eco-friendly. As of January 2020, over 200,000 girls and women across India are proud users of Saafkins, including 30,000+ that have been users for consecutive years.

Livinguard works with corporate sponsors and NGOs to create programs that are increasingly sustainable in nature. By making the end user contribute towards the product cost, Livinguard strives to make people self-sufficient and ensure that they continue to practice safe MHM upon the conclusion of programs.

Livinguard is currently working on centralization of the manufacturing process. By providing raw materials to self-help groups/ communities, Livinguard is helping with employment generation, enabling women and girls to help themselves.

Proven Impact

  • Over 200,000 sets distributed to girls and women in rural India
  • Pilot program active in Southern Africa
  • Potential to improve the lives of millions of women in developing countries
  • Keeping girls in school and women at work
  • Preventing millions of tons of waste from disposable pads
  • Impact assessments show improved health, hygiene, attendance and MHM awareness
  • Users find the product comfortable, easy to use and wash, clean

GiveHer5

GiveHer5 is a social initiative aimed at eradicating period poverty in India. For each donation of $3.30 or INR 200, GiveHer5 provides a girl/woman in need menstrual hygiene awareness, 1 set of Saafkins  and continued access to Saafkins through its partners. GiveHer5 uses a network of NGO partners to reach the remotest of areas and continuously strives to give girls “5 of those days” back!

Currently present in over 7 states, GiveHer5 has partnered with reputed organisations like Akanksha, Adithi, Centre Direct, Srijan Society, WOTR and many others to create lasting impact in people’s lives.

To know donate, get involved or know more, please visit www.giveher5.org

Facemaks

From smog hanging over cities to smoke inside the home, air pollution poses a major threat to health and climate. The combined effects of ambient (outdoor) and household air pollution cause about 7 million premature deaths every year, largely as a result of increased mortality from stroke, heart disease, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, lung cancer and acute respiratory infections. More than 80% of people living in urban areas that monitor air pollution are exposed to air quality levels that exceed the WHO guideline level of 10µg/m3, with low- and middle-income countries suffering from the highest exposures.

The major outdoor pollution sources include vehicles, power generation, building heating systems, agriculture/waste incineration and industry. In addition, more than 3 billion people worldwide rely on polluting technologies and fuels (including biomass, coal and kerosene) for household cooking, heating and lighting, releasing smoke into the home and leaching pollutants outdoors.

Poor urban planning, which leads to sprawl and over-dependence on private vehicle transport, is also a major factor in accelerated pollution emissions.

Adverse health consequences to air pollution can occur as a result of short- or long-term exposure. The pollutants with the strongest evidence of health effects are particulate matter (PM), ozone (O3), nitrogen dioxide (NO2) and sulphur dioxide (SO2).

Although most emissions of ambient air pollution are from local or regional sources, under certain atmospheric conditions air pollution can travel long distances across national borders over time scales of 4-6 days, thereby affecting people far away from its original source. For example, windblown dust from desert regions of Africa, Mongolia, Central Asia and China can carry large concentrations of particulate matter, fungal spores and bacteria that impact health and air quality in remote areas. Therefore, global cooperation is needed to address international flows and sources of air pollutants, complementary to local and regional efforts in air pollution management.

Pollution masks eliminate the effects of undesirable particles in the air. They generally rely on filters to block such particles. One challenge with such an approach is that pathogenic microorganisms are in the air too. Although these microorganisms can be blocked, they can also continue living and growing on filters that tend to offer the prime conditions for bacteria and fungi to thrive. This problem is known as biofouling.

We fight this problem by equipping the filter with antimicrobial properties that inhibits the growth of bacteria and fungi on the air filter media, preventing material deterioration and extending its useful life.

The net result is a longer-lasting and more functional filter that improves the hygiene and safety of the product.

  • Germs are present in droplets and airborne suspended particulate matter → the greater the humidity and the pollution, the greater the infection risk
  • Particulate matter filters, even those that meet N95 and N99 standards, can filter most bacteria and some viruses
  • However, trapped bacteria are still alive on the mask in prime conditions for them to grow
  • Through natural respiratory action and handling (removing, storing, wearing), this poses a greater infection risk
  • Applying a disinfecting technology would alleviate this risk

The 3 biggest challenges for respirators

Livinguard patented solution for respirators

Layer 2 blocks particulate matter

  • N95 filters block most particles in the air and therefore most of the germs contained in dust

livinguard-charged layers (1 and 3) destroy microbes

  • Microbes on dust particles filtered by layers 1 and 3 are partially killed (in contact with textile surface)
  • Microbes contained in droplets filtered / absorbed by layer 1 and 3 are killed very effectively
  • Microbes accumulating in layer 2 and transferred through respiration to layers 1 and 3 are killed upon contact with the textile surface
  • Layers 1 and 3 remain disinfected and show very low contamination levels

Results

  • Strongly reduces the transfer of pathogens from infected persons to the environment and from the environment to non-infected persons
  • As the outside layers (1 and 3) are permanent disinfectants, cross-contamination of the person handling the mask is largely reduced