For decades at Fleis & VandenBrink (F&V), Rich Grant was all about safe drinking water.
In his spare time, and in most of his time off in the last decade, the professional engineer, principal and head of F&V’s water resources group in Grand Rapids started ministering to undeveloped countries.
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Rich Grant, left, has delivered about 400 Chlorine Producing Units to parts of Asia and Central America with Safe Water International Ministries.
His mission with Safe Water International Ministries (SWIM) included creating and delivering life-saving technology to poverty-stricken countries like India.
Water in the United States has been routinely treated with chlorine for more than a century, and has increased life expectancy significantly. In many places around the world, however, waterborne diseases like cholera, dysentery, typhoid and diarrhea remain the leading cause of illness and hospitalization.
The healing power delivered by SWIM to scores of villages around the world comes from a simple gadget that costs about $50. It is made of titanium and PVC and uses electrochemistry to turn food-grade table salt into liquid chlorine.
“At first I thought this device is just too simple to be important,” Grant said. “I looked at the thing and said, ‘This is crazy simple.’ But it is crazy simple and so effective.
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