Students sending LifeStraws to African village

Posted February 4, 2009 12:26 a.m. EST
Updated February 4, 2009 10:22 a.m. EST

— Some North Carolina State University students are raising money and awareness about a global epidemic.

"This is a life-changing, life-altering device,” said Katie Youngs, N.C. State student.

Youngs is referring to LifeStraw, a $2 portable water purifier used in third world countries to prevent water-borne disease.

Members of the Wolfpack Environmental Student Association (WESA) are asking people to donate money so LifeStraws can be sent to a former N.C. State student. He is working in a remote African village with the Peace Corps where the devices are desperately needed.

"It really ties N.C. State to the global community,” Teri Denault said of the effort.

Denault helped spearhead the project after learning about LifeStraws from her professor.

"We often think that in order to help these people, we have to use all this high technology. We have to build a billion dollar water treatment plant and in fact, in the third world, it is not going to work,” said Dr. Robert Bruck, N.C. State professor.

The LifeStraw device removes about 99.9 of impurities by pulling water through several layers of filters.

The N.C. State students, along with some Cary high school students, hope to raise enough money to buy and ship 1,000 LifeStraws to the African village.

For more information on the initiative, contact