Water-to-Go are working with the African Wildlife Foundation

Water-to-Go are delighted to announce that we are working with the African Wildlife Foundation in order to raise money and awareness of the work that they do to ensure wildlife and wild lands thrive in modern Africa. This is an exciting new partnership for the business as we continue to grow and spread the message about Water-to-Go.

African Wildlife Foundation is improving the lives of local people alongside protecting wildlife and their habitat so both can have a sustainable fugure. AWF works directly with communities and local partners to understand the obstacles faced and find solutions specific to their needs so that livelihoods do not destroy the natural environment or threaten the survival of wildlife. By providing incentives such as economic enterprises, access to better education or sharing income from tourism, AWF’s programmes support communities to develop whilst embracing conservation. We are pleased to be supporting these initiatives through this campaign.

Kirstin Johnson, UK Director of the African Wildlife Foundation; Chaz Powell, UK adventurer and Water-to-Go ambassador; Dave Shanks, CEO and Founder of Water-to-Go

Headquartered in Nairobi, Kenya, the African Wildlife Foundation (AWF) has nearly 60 years of experience working to ensure wildlife and wild lands thrive in a modern Africa. As one of the oldest and largest conservation organizations focused solely on the continent of Africa, AWF is the primary advocate for the protection of African wildlife and wild lands.

For this campaign, Water-to-Go has produced a special edition bottle that is available via our website. We will donate £10 from every special bottle sold towards AWF’s work to protect the wildlife and wild lands in Africa. 

African Wildlife Foundation Limited Edition 75cl filter bottle

Water-to-Go bottles protect our planet by providing an environmentally friendly alternative to single-use plastic. On his travels around the world, Water-to-Go founder Dave Shanks was shocked at the piles of plastic waste he saw that were damaging local communities and the planet. He sought to create a sustainable solution to this problem and developed a reusable, recyclable water bottle that contains a unique 3-in-1 filter that provides safe drinking water anywhere. Now, Water-to-Go are working with AWF to ensure the sustainable future of Africa’s people, wildlife and land.

Africa loses 8 percent of its elephants to poaching every year. AWF’s programmes include training and equipping rangers, deploying sniffer and detection dogs, setting aside protected areas for critically endangered wildlife and educating the public and those responsible for law enforcement on how the destruction of habitat and illegal wildlife trade is robbing Africa of its future. You can all get involved in our project to support wildlife conservation and ensure Africa’s elephants do not become endangered.

We are delighted to be working with a charity of the calibre and influence of the African Wildlife Foundation. They align with the visions and goals of our business, and together we are committed to making a difference. Through this campaign, we are doing our bit to help protect Africa’s wildlife and wild lands.

The African Wildlife Foundation joins Water-to-Go in its vision to protect the planet by reducing single-use plastic water bottles on their member safaris, and by distributing Water-to-Go bottles to a selection of rangers protecting wildlife on the front line. Water-to-Go will be donating some of these limited edition AWF bottles to the charity so that these rangers can stay healthy and hydrated wherever they are.

Water-to-Go was delighted to be invited to the Royal Over-seas League in London to hear about AWF’s partnership with the Rwandan Development Board that focuses on Mountain Gorilla Conservation in Rwanda alongside community empowerment and development.

This is just one of many initiatives in Africa that are improving people’s lives as well as protecting the wildlife that is so important to the future of the country. It was fantastic to hear about this and to know that our campaign will be actively contributing to these projects.

We were also delighted to meet Yamina Karitanyi, the High Commissioner of the Republic of Rwanda to the UK, at the event who has fully endorsed our project with AWF. CEO and Founder of Water-to-Go, Dave Shanks, got the chance to speak with her about the business and our project with AWF so we are very pleased to have their backing and support going forward.

Yamina Karitanyi, High Commissioner of the Republic of Rwanda to the UK; and Dave Shanks, Founder and CEO of Water-to-Go
We need your help if we want this campaign to be a success. If you want to be a part of this campaign, just click the link below and keep up to date on our social media channels. Thank you in advance for your support.

To learn more, visit www.watertogo.eu/awf

Meet Paolo: Water-to-Go’s youngest ever ambassador

Multiple award-winning Paolo Ben Salmi, aka Pint Size Adventurer, is not your average 9 year old – he is a public figure, speaker, former radio host, author and now Water-to-Go’s youngest ever ambassador!

Water-to-Go is delighted to be working with Paolo to prove that age is just a number when you want to make a difference. The idea and tagline behind Pint Size Adventurer was to show that ‘Together We Can Explore The World.’ He believes that there should be no boundaries in the way of travelling and exploring the world so he is the perfect person to promote and inspire adventures with Water-to-Go.

He is the multiple award-winning author of “Pint Size Adventurer – 10 Key Principles To Get Your Kids off their iPads” and “Into The Wild”. He is an award-winning public speaker who has spoken at events such as the Mercedes Benz World and will be live on stage at The Best You Expo 2019. He is a member of Team Trouble founded by Amazing Arabella & JD The Super Car Kid. He is a founder of The Abundant Adventure Inventor™.

Paolo is also a personal developments coach and founder of Pint Size Adventurer. Paolo aims to inspire people to explore the world more deeply and seeks to get more people to go on adventures. He helps you to plant the seed towards self-discovery and exploration of the world in abundance to create a brighter future.

Paolo understands the effects we have on the planet particularly when travelling and on adventurers so wants to provide solutions to become more sustainable. By encouraging his followers to purchase a Water-to-Go bottle, he hopes to reduce plastic and help protect the planet.

Paolo recently had an interview on London Live to promote his future adventures and excursions, one of which was partnering up with Water-to-Go. This was a fantastic publicity opportunity for Paolo, his family and Water-to-Go so we are delighted that he got the chance to let the nation know what he is passionate about and how others can follow in his footsteps.

 

Not only did he talk about his adventure, he also made his feelings clear about plastic pollution and what needs to be done to reduce plastic waste in this country. It is a very current topic right now and one which is causing problems and debates right across the world. So it was important for Paolo to highlight one of his new projects; promoting the Water-to-Go bottle. It is proving to be a common theme for the youngsters to highlight the problems and to show everyone else what we need to do in order to ensure the future of our planet.

As it is refillable and sustainable, Water-to-Go is a perfect reusable alternative to single-use plastic bottles. It is cost-effective and very simple to use; just fill up from any non-salt water source and it filters as you drink. You can use it everyday on your tap water at work or at home and on more questionable sources when you are away on holiday.

On the way to his interview, he even made a stop at a Blacks store, one of our stockists, to check out the Water-to-Go bottles that they had on offer. He was clearly excited to see they had plenty of bottles that they were selling to the general public.

Paolo maybe the ‘Pint-sized’ adventurer but we know that he has big ambitions and we can envisage big things happening in his career and in his life so watch this space! He is an inspiration to everyone, old and young, and we are privileged to welcome him onboard with us at Water-to-Go as one of our brand ambassadors.

Paolo is also going to be visiting the Destinations Show in February, where Water-to-Go will be exhibiting, so we look forward to seeing him there.

Paolo has a DREAM to get Water-to-Go into the hands of one million Adventures around the world and he wants your help to make his dream a reality.

To find out more about Paolo, check out his page on our website and follow him on social media.

Find the Map Travels with Water-to-Go

Guest blog post from Rosie Dimech about 'Find the Map Travel' and their experience of travelling with Water-to-Go. Rosie gives a fascinating insight into family travels and the amazing places they have visited.

Our modus operandi is ‘Collecting Memories and not Things’! We are a full-time travel family that gave up life in the suburbs to go and explore the world with our kids.

Yes, what we are doing is considered ‘Brave’ to some and just plain ‘Crazy’ to others. However, you only get one life, so you might as well spend your time living your dreams rather than waiting… for them to come true.

My dream is to get to know our kids better and have the time to make unique and long-lasting memories.

So we packed up our lives in the suburbs and are now travelling Europe in a Motorhome spending every day together.

Find The Map’s 20 Countries and Counting

As you can see we have been to over 20 countries in the last year and our biggest parental concern when traveling is the health and safety of our children.

Water-to-Go providing Clean, Safe Drinking Water

Finding reliable safe drinking water in new locations is a top priority. Is the water at our new destination safe to drink? Was a constant question for me as a parent.

We just couldn’t be 100% positive that the water sources were reliable, so I needed a solution that would work no matter where we went.

A fellow traveller recommended the Water-to-Go Filtered Bottle. I love recommendations as they have been tried, tested and deemed trustworthy by someone else. So I did a little research and brought our own bottles.

We have five 50cl bottles and take them everywhere with us. They go up mountains, on city trips and even to restaurants with us.

They are small, lightweight and the perfect size for kids. I no longer have to think about boiling water to drink ‘just in case’ as I can rely on the Water-to-Go filter to remove 99.9% of microbiological contaminants.

As a traveller and parent, Water-to-Go bottles give me peace of mind. Without them we face the prospect of sick kids, lost travel time, doctors and medical bills.

Its one less thing that I have to organise or pre-think before travelling to a new destination, especially if it is a foreign country.

Having clean and safe drinking water is a priority for my family! So is the reduction in single-use plastic, which these bottles facilitate.

Read more on the benefits of using Water-to-Go Filtered Water Bottles for the Environment on our website.

If you are unsure of the water quality in the country or location you are travelling to I recommend you get yourself a Water-to-Go Bottle, which will also help save our environment by reducing the number of single-use plastic bottles that end up in landfill.

It’s a small price to pay to have peace of mind on your next trip.

Water-to-Go meets Malaria No More UK ambassadors at World Malaria Report

On Tuesday 20th November 2018, Water-to-Go was delighted to be invited to the House of Lords in London to hear about the World Malaria Report in association with our new partners, Malaria No More UK.

Every year, the World Health Organisation releases its annual World Malaria Report and it’s a critical moment for Malaria No More UK and their partners to check in on their strategies and ensure we are moving in the right direction in defeating malaria. Water-to-Go are pleased to be one of these strategies in raising funds and awareness to tackle malaria with our new project.

This year’s report is a story of progress and peril that builds on what we have known for some time. The knowledge that the world was at a critical junction, where stalled progress and funding risked us losing all the hard-fought gains of the last decade, whilst investment and innovation could accelerate us to the end of one of the deadliest diseases of all time, was the urgent message that led to 53 countries sharing a promise to halve malaria by 2023. Seven months on from the Malaria Summit and this years’ data offers us great hope. India appears to be at a turning point, and more countries than ever before are on track to eliminate.  But alongside this hope, the threat remains high with alarming signs of cases increasing in some of the hardest hit countries, and the looming threats of resistance and the parasite adaptation.

The Commonwealth Commitment is needed more than ever. Their new five-year strategy is laser focused on ensuring that the promise to halve malaria in five years, will be more than positive words, but delivered, including a summit in Kigali, Rwanda in 2020 – the catalyst to bring the malaria fight to the heart of Africa and to put it back on track to ending malaria in our lifetimes.

Malaria is the world’s oldest and deadliest disease and more has to be done to tackle it. Around since the dinosaurs, malaria is thought to have killed up to half of all humankind. But today the disease still kills a child every two minutes, despite being entirely preventable (using bed nets, insecticide spraying and antimalarial drugs) and treatable (costing less than £1 to save a life). It still kills almost half a million people every year.

Malaria No More UK Leadership Council Member, David Beckham, stepped into a box with thousands of mosquitos to call for bold action against malaria. This video was developed by Ridley Scott’s production team for the Malaria Must Die, so Millions Can Live campaign which culminated in the Malaria Summit London, in April 2018, where all 53 Commonwealth nations pledged to halve cases and deaths of the disease by 2023.

Water-to-Go is working with Malaria No More UK to help raise funds and awareness to tackle the world’s oldest and deadliest disease, malaria. To do this, we are selling limited edition Malaria No More UK bottles on our website that are available to purchase now. Water-to-Go will donate a minimum of £8.00 + VAT from each bottle sold to Malaria No More UK, in supporting the work that they do.⠀⠀

We have a shared ambition to improve the health and wellbeing of everyone, everywhere. You can support the partnership by purchasing a limited edition bottle. By buying a limited edition bottle, you will be contributing to our partnership and helping make malaria no more. Together we can be the generation that beats malaria.⠀

It was also great to meet broadcaster and journalist, Charie Webster, at the event who also joined the panel to give more insight into malaria and how it is being tackled. Charlie suffered with a rare form of malaria back in 2016 and has been raising awareness ever since she recovered. In this video, the Malaria No More UK ambassador visited Uganda to take on the disease that nearly took her life.

Another esteemed panel member was Yamina Karitanyi, the High Commissioner of Rwanda, who highlighted what Rwanda is doing to combat the disease and reflected on the success they have had in doing so. This year, there has been 436,000 less reported cases of malaria from the previous year which is fantastic progress. They are leading the way in Africa in tackling malaria and they are working hard to continue the good work.

Lots of great work has been done over the last 10 years but this report has highlighted that depsite this, more has to be done to get rid of malaria for good. Water-to-Go has just partnered with Malaria No More UK to help them achieve this and raise funds for the life-changing work they do.

The Secret CEO is a ruthless tycoon who peddles a cruel disease that takes the life of a child every two minutes. In the 21st Century, no child should die from a mosquito bite. By supporting Malaria No More UK you are helping to put him out of business and save lives. Malaria must die, so that millions can live. You can help with this and get involved with the campaign to tackle malaria.

Personal Trainer Fights Single-Use Plastic

Olivia Furner is a Reigate based Personal Trainer, who also has a strong interest in environmental change and in particular trying to reduce her consumption of single-use plastic which has a devastating effect on our oceans, and its wildlife.

Olivia works as a personal trainer, blogger and Sweaty Betty ambassador. She uses her influence to spread the message of health, fitness and sustainability to those who follow her. So far, she has helped others make simple swaps and hopes her work will help to bring about further change. Olivia is keen to show people it doesn’t need to be difficult and encourages small steps, such as swapping your usual plastic bottle for a reusable option such as Water-to-Go.

Every year, July brings about the global movement “Plastic Free July”, which has millions of people around the globe giving up single-use plastic for one month. To mark this, Olivia aimed to run a half marathon every week, to raise further awareness and to fundraise for the UK based charity Surfers Against Sewage. She hopes this challenge will inspire people to embrace simple lifestyle changes.

Olivia after finishing her first half-marathon back in July

Whilst she follows a life focused around health and fitness, taking care of the world is something she has been actively sharing with others. She follows a prominently plant-based diet, and have been taking steps to live a more sustainable lifestyle.

“In the past year I’ve been making changes to my lifestyle, by reducing the amount of single-use plastic I consume. Whilst living plastic free isn’t an easy task, reducing is something we can all do. Whilst on this mission, I came across Water-to-Go who have been a driving force in this space a for a while now! Their bottles, have a filtration system that ensures 99.9% of bacteria is removed from the water you drink. This is a game changer to reduce plastic when you’re on the go, but also when out of the UK. I often get asked what bottles I use, and as many people don’t like drinking just tap water my top recommendation is always Water-to-Go!”

Olivia Furner

 

 

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Whether you are trying to use less plastic when travelling or just in daily life, Water-to-Go is perfect for you. Our reusable, refillable bottles have a 3-in-1 technology filter inside that eliminates harmful contaminants such as viruses and bacteria from any non-salt water source in the world so you can have safe, drinking water wherever you are. So whether you don’t like the taste of tap water or want to stay safe on your travels, Water-to-Go is perfect for you. Furthermore, by using a Water-to-Go, you will be saving on hundreds of single-use plastic bottles every year that pollute our rivers and oceans.

Olivia is passionate about staying fit and healthy and works to helps others do this as well. She endeavours to make training sessions and exercises fun for everyone so it doesn’t really feel too much like hard work.

If you’re looking to take your fitness to the next level, Olivia is the person for you. Whether you’re looking to strengthen your running, achieve your first pull up or maintain a regular training pattern with three different packages, she can offer you the support and accountability you need to achieve your goals.

Something else that also drew Olivia to the Water-to-Go bottle was that as far as we are aware, Water-to-Go are the first water filter bottle to become Halal certified. Our products have gone through a rigorous process of examination that has confirmed that we use no animal products or by-products. Halal certification also ensures integrity and ethical way of doing business by eluding harm to the environment. In addition, although there is no mechanism for it, the bottles are also suitable for vegans and vegetarians.

Furthermore, the Water-to-Go filters are recyclable so there is no waste product to worry about.

If you are wondering about how to become more sustainable especially in the run up to Christmas, Olivia has that covered as well! Make sure to check out Olivia’s guide to a more sustainable Christmas where she also recommends Water-to-Go as a way of reducing plastic waste amongst other great gift ideas.

Whilst I keep on about this, I still see so many people with plastic bottles. My recommendation would be Water-to-Go

In her spare time, Olivia also creates a lot of interesting recipes that everyone can try in order to maintain a balanced diet and healthy lifestyle. Check out this fantastic but simple bakes and dishes to impress your friends and family.

We are delighted to be working and collaborating with Olivia to promote the message of sustainability and show how everyone can make a difference in their daily lives. If you are interested in learning more about Olivia and her brand, click on the picture below.

Water-to-Go sponsors the Waterbike Collective

Water-to-Go is sponsoring the Waterbike Collective set up by the organisation, Say Yes More. The project is a communal waterbike relay along 1000 miles of England’s rivers and canals, aiming to collect one million pieces of litter from the countryside along the way. The journey started in late April and their waterbike is now moving around the canal system. Say Yes More are inviting everyone to jump onboard for a leg to celebrate and look after our waterways, and to spread the word on social media so more people can get involved.

Say Yes More is a non-profit social enterprise run by volunteers who like to help nudge people towards their potential. They have a community called the YesTribe, an annual microfestival for positive change called Yestival, weekly free campouts where they wild camp under the stars just a short ride from the city, motivating nights of adventurous tales called YesStories, and even a converted, sun-powered double-decker bus in an amazing countryside community space.

Say Yes More was founded by Dave Cornthwaite, a British adventurer who has used water-to-Go on previous expeditions. We were keen to work with Dave again and this project was the perfect opportunity to help support a fantastic initiative whilst also putting our stamp on it. The Waterbike Collective is the most recent project that the Yes Tribe are taking part in to make a difference.

Water-to-Go is sponsoring and supporting the initiative by producing branded water filter bottles and t-shirts that are being used by the volunteers on the relay. The bottles are also available to purchase via the Water-to-Go website so anyone associated with the organisation and the project can have something that symbolises their involvement and commitment to protect the environment.

Say Yes More branded filter bottle from Water-to-Go

Over 8 million tonnes of plastic enters our oceans every year and more than 85 million single-use plastic bottles are thrown ‘away’ every 3 minutes. We cannot carry on like this and need to tackle this problem. Water-to-Go is the perfect alternative to single-use plastic bottles and a sustainable solution to plastic pollution. The Waterbike Collective will be able to stay hydrated with Water-to-Go and save on their plastic usage whilst aiming to clear Britain’s waterways of plastic as well. It’s a win-win!

This project isn’t about a waterbike really, or reaching one million pieces, it’s about changing behaviour and looking after this incredible planet we call home. They have created this journey because they believe that adventure should be accessible to everyone and adventure should do some good at the same time.

So far they have picked up over 50,000 pieces of litter on their journey which is fantastic. Help support their campaign by raising awareness and getting a branded Say Yes More bottle.

Chasing Gandhi’s Shadow: Olie Hunter Smart completes his 4,500km walk the length of India

In April 2017, Olie Hunter Smart set off on a solo journey to walk the length of India to uncover untold stories of Independence and Partition that took place in 1947.  He’s just returned to the UK and shares his story with us.  You can read about the background to his journey here.

Olie’s route through India

As I stared out of the aeroplane window on my way up to Ladakh, I thought I’d bitten off more than I could chew.  Not only did the plains of India look hot, dry and particularly arid, but the Himalayas looked huge and the snowy conditions were not something I was experienced with. 

Looking down at the folds that make up the Himalayas

However, I soon became distracted by the beauty of the mountain landscape; deep purple mountains capped in white snow; huge sunny skies and crisp fresh air; and the gentle sound of prayer wheels spinning as people went about their daily routines.  It was magical.  I was excited about the long journey that lay ahead.

Mountain scenes and snowy peaks of Ladakh

After a few days of acclimatisation, I set off with a guide essential to navigating the mountain trails that would take us off the roads, following valleys and climbing high mountain passes that blocked the route south.  We carried food with us so as not to be a burden on the remote communities we passed through, increasing my already heavy bag to around 28 kilos.  Thankfully, the Water-to-Go bottles saved us valuable weight as we filled up from icy cold snow melt streams.  It was so thirst quenching!

I filled up from ice-cold streams while trekking in the Himalayas

As we emerged from the mountain trails some 5 weeks later, I waved goodbye to the guide and set off for the dusty plains of northern India.  Temperatures soared to a staggering 48 degrees so it was critical that I kept cool and remained hydrated.  I discovered this area was heavily impacted by Partition that took place following Independence in 1947.  Millions of people fled, escaping violence and persecution as Hindu ruled East Punjab and Muslim ruled West Punjab were divided.

An elder I spoke to along my route

Most nights I stayed with families which gave me the opportunity to hear elders recounting their experience of that traumatic period of history; I found myself wincing at their accounts of the brutality, the stories of families fleeing their homes never to return, or of fathers giving their children daggers to use on themselves to avoid being subjected to violence and abuse.  I was very moved by their descriptions, something I had not anticipated hearing, but that was reality for them.

Would you walk along the railway lines in India?

I followed the railway line south, it being more direct as well as keeping me off the roads and away from the dangerous traffic and pollution.  I passed through Delhi and onto Rajasthan where I continued to hear similarly tragic stories about Partition, but on occasion was pleasantly surprised to come across a few positive stories from people who had been able to change their financial situation having set up successful businesses.  Food flavours were now changing every 100 kilometres or so as the agriculture influenced the dishes I was eating.  By now I’d been on the road for almost 4 months but I was loving rural India.

I’d been looking forward to the Salt March, the inspiration for my journey, since the start.  Today the route has become somewhat a heritage route making it far easier to navigate, yet the difficulty came in each village when trying to find various plaques or statues commemorating Gandhi’s walk in 1930.  Fortunately, the locals knew it well and took great pleasure in showing me around their community, regaling historical stories to boot.  I reached Dandi where Gandhi broke the salt law, realising that I was now over half way through my journey.  It was an emotional moment.

No longer reliant on Google maps as my route was marked to Dandi!

Back on the road I worked my way down to the busting city of Mumbai.  India is well set up for constant refills of your own bottle in the hot climate, whether it be a hand pump or well in a village, a tap on a railway platform or from the increasing number of reverse osmosis stations set up in villages to provide clean water to the communities. My Water-to-Go bottle provided me with consistently good quality and safe water from whatever source I found.

I would fill up anywhere I could find fresh water along my route

By now I was beginning to get increasingly frustrated with life on the road – the hooting, incessant demands for selfies and that spicy food.  Couldn’t I just have cereal for breakfast?!  I’d been walking for 6 months, but it was only when I worked my way uphill to Pune that I realised I had spent the best part of three months in the flat plains of India.  There had been no texture in the landscape, nothing on the horizon to aim for.  I’d been missing the hills, so I made it my mission to find a place to camp next to a lake, and soon enough I found the perfect spot!

Finding a place to camp was tricky, but on occasions I found the ideal spot

I continued south, meeting some freedom fighters that had fought alongside Mahatma Gandhi in the struggle for freedom, many of whom were over 90 years old.  As I neared Mysore I was confident with my progress until one day someone asked me how I would avoid being attacked by a tiger.  Tigers?!  They’d not even crossed my mind this far south.  I carried on, getting increasingly worried as I went, trying to figure out alternative routes.  I spent half a day with all senses on edge as I walked steadily through a tiger reserve, completely petrified.

Should I heed the warning signs?

That night I resolved to find a driver who could shadow me for the next stretch of forest.  The following morning, he arrived and I set off, safe in the knowledge that there was an extra pair of eyes on the lookout.  Relief ran through my veins as I reached the end of the forest and the safety of a temple that night.

Kanyakumari in my sights!

Kanyakumari was in my sights, but there was one final obstacle I had to overcome – Cyclone Ockhi with her devastating wind and rain.  Having already walked through monsoon rains I was determined not to be put off by some adverse weather and ploughed on, reaching the very southern tip of India on 6th December.  After seven and a half months on foot, I’d made it!  What an incredible way to experience real India!

With nowhere else to go, I can now relax!

Olie is currently working on a documentary of his journey. 

To find out the latest, follow @oliehuntersmart on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram.

Water-to-Go ambassador, Ash Dykes, is attempting his toughest challenge yet

Ash Dykes is an extreme athlete and adventurer who is embarking on his latest challenge. After conquering Mongolia and Madagascar, Ash has announced details of his forthcoming expedition which is something that has never been done before. Water-to-Go attended an exclusive event at Canary Wharf along with other sponsors and partners to hear the announcement.

Ash Dykes with sponsors and partners at his expedition launch event in Canary Wharf (Photography by lubo – distinguished photography — www.stefanlubo.com)

On Wednesday 7th March 2018, Water-to-Go ambassador, Ash Dykes, launched his expedition to the world in style. The day saw a gathering of Ash’s team and sponsors at The Pagination in Canary Wharf, to celebrate the launch of the long-planned world first. It certainly went down as Ash’s greatest announcement to date; the expedition was the most talked about news throughout the UK on Wednesday, reaching hundreds of thousands of people within just 12 hours. The news was covered in the likes of the Independent, BBC News, Mail Online to name a few and his announcement video received well in excess of 100,000+ views.

“The support has been overwhelming and I’d like to personally and genuinely thank everyone for being behind me, team members, sponsors and the public – it’s been incredible and is only just the beginning.”

Ash Dykes

Ash Dykes with Dave Shanks, Water-to-Go CEO                                                                          (Photography by lubo – distinguished photography — www.stefanlubo.com)

Ash Dykes is attempting to become the first person to walk the length of the Yangzte River.

This year, Ash will attempt his greatest expedition yet, as he walks from the Yangtze’s source in the melt waters of the Jianggendiru Glacier on the Tibetan Plateau to its delta near Shanghai, where it meets the East China Sea. This expedition is set to be his toughest yet; it will be over 4000 miles, an estimated 8 million steps, that will take at least a year to complete. This is definitely not for the faint-hearted. The Yangtze is the longest river in the world to flow through a single country. Its length has never been walked, until now.

The severity of this 6,437km challenge is not to be underestimated. Throughout Ash’s estimated 8 million step exploration, he will undoubtedly come across some of nature’s most intimidating experiences. From snakes to bears, wolves to Asian hornets – the isolating weather-ranging and isolating challenge will push all of Ash’s strengths to the limit.

Ash may be superhuman to most people but even he needs to stay hydrated and find safe drinking water whilst on his expedition. Whilst this may pose some problems to most people, this is something that Ash doesn’t need to worry about. The last thing he would want to do is add to the weight he is already carrying with bottled water not to mention also spending a lot of money on something that he can find for free.

With Water-to-Go by his side every step of the way, Ash will be able to stay well hydrated and healthy throughout his journey. Water-to-Go will be his personal, portable water filtration system that will allow him to find safe, drinking water from any non-salt water source in the world. The Water-to-Go bottle filters out well in excess of 99.9% of all microbiological contaminants in water that can make you ill. These include bacteria, viruses, parasites, lead, chlorine and water borne cysts. This means he can fill up from any non-saltwater source and still be able to drink healthy, safe water making it his ideal travel companion.

Ever since we started working with Ash back in 2014, he now swears by Water-to-Go for all of his expeditions to keep himself healthy and hydrated. That year, Ash became the first ever recorded person to walk across Mongolia solo and unsupported, covering a distance of over 1,500 miles in 78 days. He trekked over the Altai Mountains, through the Gobi Desert and the Mongolian Steppe, all whilst pulling a wheeled trailer weighing 120kg, carrying everything needed to survive. Whilst this was hard going mentally and physically, Ash was able to complete this incredible challenge and stay hydrated by filling up from local water sources without getting ill.

“I had been searching for some time, for a really good & effective water filter to take on my expedition across Mongolia, but I kept coming across water filters that needed to be pumped to purify the water (in a desert of 45 degrees C, this was the last thing I wanted to do).

My agent came across the Water-to-Go stand at an adventure festival and asked for a demo & how they worked. He was so impressed that he sent me a text straight after, in which I then went on the website, and found the perfect bottle to take out with me. I’ll be coming across all sorts of water sources in some extreme locations.

The fact that I could top the bottle up and drink it straight away was what hooked me the most, and it was an absolute must for me in such an environment, but even my latest trek in Scotland saw me topping it up constantly from lochs, rivers etc and the taste was perfect. The bottle really does deliver and I’m super impressed with it & can’t wait to use it on my latest expedition. Fantastic product, team & service, I highly recommend.”

      Ash Dykes

“The bottle really does deliver and I’m super impressed with it & can’t wait to use it on my latest expedition.”

His next amazing challenge was in 2016 when Ash achieved his second world record by becoming the first person to walk the entire length of Madagascar’s interior, whilst summiting its eight highest Mountains. An expedition of over 1,600 miles, taking 155 days to complete where he faced many challenges from being held up by the military, contracting the deadliest form of Malaria, crossing crocodile infested rivers amongst much more, and one that Bear Grylls wished him luck on.

His next expedition is just as mind-boggling and challenging as the others but with Water-to-Go by his side, we are sure that Ash will persevere to complete his toughest challenge to date.

Following our recent launch in China, this has been the perfect opportunity to help promote Ash’s incredible new venture to a whole new audience. We have appointed HH (Shanghai) Environment Technology Co Ltd. as our new partner and distributor for China, Hong Kong, Taiwan and Macao as Water-to-Go continues to expand and enter new markets.

Ash Dykes with our new partners and distributor for China, HH (Shanghai) Environment Technology Co Ltd. — Following our recent launch in China, this has been the perfect opportunity to help promote Ash’s incredible new venture to a whole new audience.

Sustainable travel is an important aspect of Ash’s expeditions which is why the connection with Water-to-Go is so poignant. We are only too aware of the effect that we have on the planet particularly when travelling and Water-to-Go is the perfect sustainable solution to the damage caused by single-use plastic. Water-to-Go are working with several organisations and partners such as Ash to help tackle this problem.

“Water-to-Go are delighted to be sponsoring Ash Dykes on his latest mission along the Yangtze River. Having worked with him since 2014 and sponsored him on his previous expeditions to Mongolia and Madagascar, we couldn’t wait to work with him again following the announcement of his next mind-boggling challenge. We know that in the toughest times of his previous expeditions, Water-to-Go has been with him every step of the way and has helped him through to the end. Ash is a fantastic ambassador for Water-to-Go we are grateful for the faith he has shown in the product and the business.

This announcement has coincided perfectly with our recent launch in China so it has been a pleasure to introduce Ash to our partners [Health and Happiness] in Shanghai. This has not only strengthened our partnership further but has been a great opportunity to promote both Ash’s next venture and our expansion into new global markets. We wish Ash all the best on his expedition and we can’t wait to see what the future holds.”

Dave Shanks, Water-to-Go CEO

Ash is not only a fantastic ambassador but a true inspiration to so many people by showing the importance of pushing your limits, dreaming big, having goals and staying persistent in achieving them.

Water-to-Go bottles and communications systems from Galaxy1 and Navarino       (Photography by lubo – distinguished photography — www.stefanlubo.com)

Water-to-Go isn’t the only important bit of kit for his expedition. Ash will be able to stay constantly connected with this amazing Galaxy1 IsatPhone and Data Hard Drive from Navarino.

Ash will be venturing on this mission in the next few months and you can stay up to date with everything that goes on as he hopes to make it one of the most interactive expeditions ever as well.

 

 

 

Follow his journey on social media and on his website

Water-to-Go sponsors Kwanza Kayak Journey

My name is Oscar Scafidi and I am a History teacher, travel writer and political risk consultant for Lusophone Africa. I currently live and work in Antananarivo, Madagascar, but between 2009 and 2014 I lived in Luanda, Angola.

 

My name is Oscar Scafidi and I am a History teacher, travel writer and political risk consultant for Lusophone Africa

In July 2016, together with my expedition partner Alfy Weston, we kayaked the length of Angola’s Kwanza River, from source to sea.

We used a 40-year-old foldable wooden kayak (called a Klepper) that we paddled and carried along the 1,300km journey. This trip retraced some of the steps of sixteenth-century English explorer Andrew Battel and recorded information on wildlife and human activity along the remote stretches of the river. So far we have raised over USD 25,000 for The HALO Trust, an organization specializing in the removal of the debris of war, such as landmines. Our journey is currently being reviewed by Guinness World Records.

 

Together with my expedition partner Alfy Weston, we kayaked the length of Angola’s Kwanza River, from source to sea
The journey was all Alfy’s idea. He had kayaked a shorter section of the lower Kwanza River a few years prior with two of his brothers. We decided that if we were going to tackle the whole thing, it was important to raise money for a worthwhile cause. Having lived in Angola for years, both of us knew the terrible toll landmines and unexploded ordnance have on rural Angolan communities. Angola was the scene of a brutal civil war between 1975 and 2002, and it will take organisations like The HALO Trust and MAG years to clean up all the remaining minefields.
I had to make do with training on the River Thames in London

We spent nine months planning the route, collecting gear and training for the expedition. Alfy got to do his training in Angola, as he was still there for work, whereas as I had to make do with training on the River Thames in London!

We had to drag the Klepper and all of our gear (over 110kg) around 55km from the source of the river to a point deep enough for us to start paddling
It was not an easy journey. We had to drag the Klepper and all of our gear (over 110kg) around 55km from the source of the river to a point deep enough for us to start paddling. For the next month, we faced various obstacles including aggressive hippos, rapids and some very obstructive security officials who arrested us for spying! Packing up all our gear into a load that we could both carry (and fit into the kayak) was difficult. It was clear from the planning stages that we were not going to be able to carry much water, and that we needed to rely on a purification system.

 

We used Water-to-Go bottles to drink directly from the river. We also filled up confidently at a few random fishing villages during hiking sections of the expedition. We found the Water-to-Go bottles much more reliable than the other water filtration systems we had with us, and had no gastrointestinal issues for the whole 33 day expedition. Staying healthy and hydrated was crucial when trying to kayak 70km+ per day. We are thankful to the Water-to-Go team for such a useful invention. The bottles helped us to successfully complete the expedition, raising USD 25,000 for The HALO Trust’s vital mine clearance work in Angola. 

 

We used Water-to-Go bottles to drink directly from the river
We have now published a book about our adventure, which can be purchased here: https://unbound.com/books/kayak-the-kwanza/ 
25% of the profits from sales will be donated to help continue The HALO Trust’s vital de-mining work in Angola. 

 

Oscar and Alfy along with their support team
Guest blog post by Oscar Scafidi

 

Water-to-Go is pleased to have helped Oscar and Alfy stay healthy and hydrated every step of the way on their journey along the Kwanza River. Their book is a symbol of their hard work and dedication to this project. They can now finally tell everyone about their awesome adventure and we would definitely recommend purchasing the book, not only to support the boys but also to support the Halo Trust.

 

We can’t wait to see what is next in store for the boys so watch this space!

 

2,500 plastic bottles pulled out of the Thames in 1 DAY

We’re always trying to highlight the devastating impact that single-use plastics have on our planet.

It’s easy for it to go over our heads when we hear overwhelming stats and figures about the issue on a larger scale, but it’s only when we look closer to home that we start realising the horrifying reality.

Recently litter pickers in London found 2,500 plastic bottles in just ONE DAY on the Thames. Just one day!

Volunteers from London based charity, Thames 21, collected the huge amount of rubbish from 11 different sites on the river. The event has given an eye-opening indication on how many plastic bottles are in the Thames at a particular time. The charity plans to repeat the study 4 times a year which will help determine how long it takes to build up and what times of year it’s at its worse.

The charity decided to use the ‘cleaner’ river as a test to see how quickly new bottles were junked. Monitoring the sites for 8 days after the litter pick yielded some interesting results. On just one of the eleven sites, they recorded 10 bottles wash up on the Friday and a staggering 117 bottles on the Saturday! (Site: Battersea). These figures show how consistently plastic bottles polluting our rivers and ultimately (if it wasn’t for the amazing work of charities like Thames 21) our oceans.

AJ McConville, who conducted the study has said:

“It’s sad that mineral water is the most common plastic bottle we’re finding, when bottled water is no better for us than water from the tap.”

 “We urge Londoners– use reusable water bottles, and demand more water fountains around the capital.”

Each filter in one Water-to-Go bottle can treat 200 litres of water anywhere in the world. That’s 400 single-use plastic water bottles. That means just 6 of Water-to-Go filters would be equivalent to nearly the same amount of plastic bottles that were pulled out of the Thames in just one day (6 filters = 2,400 50cl water bottles).

‘Deposit Return Systems’ (DRS) have been suggested as a good way of encouraging those who do use plastic bottles to recycle. DRS is where a tax is added to plastic bottles and can be redeemed when returned. Such systems are used across Europe, America and Canada. The idea to introduce a similar scheme in the England has recently been rejected by the Government. 

The recent levy on plastic bags has seen a dramatic 80% reduction.