It’s the world’s bestselling soft drink – more people buy bottled water than fruit juice or fizzy drinks. Bottled water can cost between 500 to 1000 times more than tap water. So why do we think it is so much better than tap water?So, is it healthier? And does it taste better?
Perceived benefits of bottled water
People buy bottled water simply because it is marketed as being “better” than tap water making it better for you. Furthermore, it is the most convenient way (when you are out and about) to get water and stay hydrated. In one study, convenience, taste, and health risks were influential factors for participants when deciding whether to buy a bottle of water or not.
The real story
It certainly has a hefty carbon footprint – with some reports estimating around 82.8g of CO2 for a half-litre bottle – not insignificant when everyone’s drinking it. Furthermore, the manufacture of plastic, as well as its destruction by incineration, pollutes air, land and water and exposes workers to toxic chemicals. The worst problem with bottled water is that the plastic it is made from either does not biodegrade or takes hundreds of years. It just sits and accumulates in landfills or pollutes the environment and the oceans.
So is it really so much better that it’s worth both paying for and harming the planet?
There is no evidence that bottled water is better for you; in fact it may be less safe than tap water. Two-thirds of water from the tap comes from surface water (reservoirs, lakes, rivers) and the rest from ground water (underground geological formations that store rainwater). For some reason, we don’t trust tap water because it is free and therefore assume there is something wrong with it. However, researchers found bottled water is subject to far less stringent safety tests than tap water and is much more likely to be contaminated or become a source of infection.
People have gained access to water, but huge inequalities remain.
A new report by the World Health Organisation/Unicef points out that since 1990, 2.6 billion people have gained access to an “improved” drinking water source, one that is designed to protect against contamination. But in 2015, 663 million people still drank water from unprotected sources. In 41 countries, a fifth of people drink water from a source that is not protected from contamination
Inevitably, there are still issues still prevalent with tap water all over the world: chlorine which is added as a disinfectant; insecticides and herbicides which can wash into rivers and lakes and seep into groundwater. Arsenic, which occurs naturally in rocks and soil, linked to increased risk of cancer; and lead, a harmful neurotoxin can be deposited into drinking water as a result of old, corroded metal pipelines.
So whilst tap water may be better than bottled water, it is still not the best option when you are travelling. You may not have access to taps and would rather not use single-use plastic bottles. Surely there is a solution to all these problems and a way to access safe, clean water wherever you are without harming the environment? This is where Water-to-Go comes in.
Use Water-to-Go and together we can change the world, one bottle, one person at a time.
Unlike bottled water, Water-to-Go eradicates all the harmful substances tap water contains whether it be chlorine or any other. Not just that, Water-to-Go eliminates over 99.9% of ALL microbiological contaminants including viruses, bacteria, chemicals and heavy metals such as lead from any non-salt water source.
It is perfect for everyday use, travelling, backpacking, outdoors, holidays, and sports. You can fill up and drink from taps, rivers, streams and standpipes to name just a few. The filter will even eliminate the smell and taste of the water.
Water-to-Go bottles are environmentally friendly reusable alternatives to single-use plastic bottles meaning you won’t need to keep buying a continuous supply of water bottles when travelling. Use Water-to-Go and you will be protecting your health, your finances and most importantly our planet from plastic pollution.
Use Water-to-Go, and together we can change the world, one bottle, one person at a time.
The project began in early 2016 with the idea to travel around the world as cheaply as possible through overlanding. The group; Max, Becca, Joel and Rich, created the concept of attempting to complete a full loop of the globe with no planning and with a tiny budget. We knew this would entail many challenging situations that would require serious team work. Shortly after sharing this idea on Facebook a number of people got involved and the team began to grow. We looked for the cheapest cars available on Gumtree, the first being a Skoda Felica for £75 and the second being a Nissan Micra for just £150. After purchasing these and getting more people involved this created a solid team for the convoy. We then started approaching sponsors asking for help through donating kit or support us and as a result, Water-to-Go were one of first product sponsors.
Then we set off East. Travelling across 4 continents and a total of 46 countries, we found ourselves in all sorts of situations both good and bad. Being an optimistic and a slightly crazy team from the start, we were ready to face all challenges ahead of us and only hope for the best of situations. Our first continent, Europe showed us the possibilities of collecting hitchhikers and at one point we had a total of 5 cars with 26 people. We were lucky enough to have our Water-to-Go bottles for the entire journey but even within Europe, we found ourselves cutting our costs by filling up from waterfalls, lakes and rivers.
Entering Russia and Central Asia on the other hand, was another story. Things became a lot more serious and challenging. Due to the roads in this part of the world being in some cases ‘non-existent’ we had some of our biggest breakdowns on the trip. The first, being in Kazakhstan, when we hit the oil sump on the diesel Skoda and were stranded in the desert. A twelve hour journey turned into 3 days, but we were rescued by the amazing workers at a nearby oil refinery. During this time as we weren’t prepared to be stranded in the desert, Water-to-Go was literally a life saver. We were given water from a passer-by and we didn’t even question using our bottles as we knew that although we had no idea where the water had come from we could drink without having to worry about illness or dehydration.
After our final sprint to Vladivostok just in time for our visas expiring, we flew to Japan. This was the first time the Convoy as a whole were without the cars and to embrace Japans hospitality and quirky culture we decided to hitchhike our way to Korea where we would later fly on to Canada to collect the cars. Japan gave us some of the most in-depth cultural experiences from to drifting down Mountain ranges near Mount Fuji and Samurai sword making, but this was our first experience backpacking with Water-to-Go. It allowed us to carry all our gear and not have to worry about lugging around litres of water. This convenience allowed us to focus our time on absorbing the culture rather than worrying about when we would next find drinking water.
Canada was the first of our shipping nightmares! We were faced with a month-long delay but on the positive side this allowed us to venture out into British Columbia and explore the beautiful nature that Canada has to offer. We were lucky enough to experience the beautiful landscapes of North America by visiting an array of national parks, including Yosemite. As hikers we used our bottles frequently in Yosemite, filling up from some of the most famous waterfalls! Being able to drink such untreated water and not getting sick felt literally so refreshing.
As we headed south through both Central and South America we continued to be accepted into communities across Belize, Guatemala and Honduras. This part of the world was very much new territory for the majority of us and we found ourselves captivated by its temples and Mayan history. Unfortunately, some of these areas are heavily covered in rubbish. We were horrified to see piles burning on roadsides continuously through Central and South America and beaches swamped with plastic. It was saddening to see beaches in Utilla, Honduras covered in plastic that had washed up from other places, destroying the environment. For the team it was a time of realisation that Water-to-Go bottles help prevent this. We calculated that if the team were to drink an average of 2 litres of water a day, for the duration of the trip, we would have used around 2,760, 1 litre plastic bottles.
We wanted to create a project where everyone and anyone could be involved and we would work with what people had to offer. Not only were we optimistic for ourselves, but by creating a project for all to be involved, created optimism in others and gave opportunities to likeminded people. The project specifically demonstrates how little equipment or modification to your car you need in order to survive. At times we wished we were more prepared but our teamwork and optimism got us through the journey and from this we have created some strong friendships with people all over the world. Sponsors like Water-to-Go really helped us achieve this goal and have been hugely influential on our journey and survival. Upon our return we have been taking our Water-to-Go bottle with us across Europe to an array of Outdoor and Adventure shows where we were able to share this amazing product.
Becca has also featured Water-to-Go in her top 10 Essentials to Travelling. These include the things that she has taken with her everywhere around the world.
Water to Go are pleased to announce their support towards Steppes travel.
Who Are They?
Steppes Travel are a company that provide bespoke and tailored trips all over world so that you can fully experience and appreciate the richness of a country’s history, culture, cuisine, flora and fauna. Steppes are also an organisation, motivated on stopping plastic pollution across the globe. Water to Go are excited to continue on supporting Steppes Travel as a referral partner and hope that together we can make a difference.
Why Are We Doing It
We will be working together on a referral scheme where we will produce a limited edition bottle that Steppes Travel will be able to offer to their clients and customers. Funds raised from this will be generated towards the Steppes Travel charity.
The benefit of this sponsorship will be for enabling Steppes Travel to continue the good works of stopping plastic pollution globally. We feel that we can be at at use by working together to end plastic pollution.
We are also very excited to be a sponsor of the Steppes Travel Beyond Festival later this year in September. We will be selling bottles there and 50% of sales at the event will also go towards the Steppes Travel Beyond charities fund.
We are very excited about this partnership and hope to work with Steppes Travel for many years to come. We hope to that through this, we can further our brand whilst also being able to support fantastic projects such as this.
For more information about our partnership please check out their website and daily social media posts.
Water-to-Go are pleased to announce support for Medecins Sans Frontieres.
Founded to save lives and speak out, MSF has helped tens of millions of people since 1971. The 13 founders have grown to over 36,000 staff on the frontline of emergency medical aid. The movement has grown and now works in over 71 countries around the world, with teams ready for any new emergency. Water-to-Go has long been a supporter of MSF, and has supplied Water-to-Go filtration bottles via their Barcelona logistics operation, and are proud to extend the association. Water-to-Go are delighted to support MSF’s efforts and goals with this project.
This particular project was brought to fruition by marketing and promotions consultancy Pandinavia and Water to Go Switzerland.
“We are delighted to work alongside Pandinavia on a project that can help deliver so much.”
Stefan Spiridon, Managing Director of Water To Go Switzerland.
Since 2014, MSF has developed an e-commerce website to support the actions of the NGO. On the e-shop of Pandinavia for MSF, you will find various products and for the new collection “I Love MSF”, Water-to-Go have manufactured a limited edition MSF branded bottle (pictured above). A percentage of each sale will go directly into the projects on the ground.
Donors are also a vital part of the movement – their generosity and support helps fund everything MSF do, with 90 percent of their income coming from individual donations. This allows MSF to stay independent, neutral and impartial– and to access those in greatest need quickly.
For most adventurers ‘simply’ cycling around the world would present enough of a challenge, but Adam Sultan, named as one of the most inspiring adventurers of 2015, is doing things slightly differently…
On the 28th of June he set off from the London Olympic Velodrome, turning his pedals for the first time on a journey that will cover at least 46,000 unsupported miles and take up to five years. This isn’t going to be your ‘average’ round the world cycle however and Adam has set himself a number of other, in many ways tougher, challenges to complete along the way, which he hopes will continue his mission of inspiring and helping others.
During his trip Adam wants to experience the world, rather than just rush through it and so plans to add in a little bit of extra ‘spice’. Added physical challenges will include cycling the 2014 Tour de France route, a tough feat for even the most seasoned of riders, avoiding the ‘quick’ round the world route and instead heading through the great mountain ranges of the Himalayas, Andes, Alps, and Rockies, and continuing his #LifeYears challenge (last year for 2015 he ran 15 marathons around the globe), this year involving doing at least 16 days where he pushes 100 miles or more on the bike.
Aside from the riding he’s also looking to participate in Citizen Science, hoping to feed information back to researchers that will help in the fields of astronomy, light pollution and conservation. He’s committed to going ‘Around the World in Eighty Ways’ working in eighty different jobs, mainly voluntary, as he travels, to really immerse himself in different cultures and help where he can. Furthermore he hopes to use his social media channels to tell the stories of those who don’t normally have a voice and raise money and awareness for charities working in the different countries he travels through, such as SEED Madagascar a small London based charity who do humanitarian and conservation work in Madagascar, one of the poorest countries on the planet.
In this era of sensationalised adventures and adventurers, some may feel that a London Underground worker cycling round the world without trying to set a record or a ‘first’ isn’t exciting news, but Adam’s trip harks back to an older era where adventure wasn’t just about pushing your body to the limits, but was about exploration, meeting new people and discovering the world around you by immersing yourself in it. Adam hopes this will be the legacy of his trip and that people will feel this is just as worthy as a record breaking ride.
“As much as I admire and respect many of today’s modern adventures I hope my trip shows people that sometimes we need to slow down a bit and not just rush into a place, take some photos and shoot off again having ticked a list. I hope it inspires people to get to really know new environments and the people in them and if needed lend a helping hand.”
After falling victim to illness from contaminated water in Eastern Europe, Adam decided to use one of our filtered bottles to protect himself for the rest of his travels:
“Water-to-Go have come to my rescue! After picking up a bad stomach bug from bad water which kept me out of action, I now don’t need to worry anymore. Extremely pleased to know I can drink clean, filtered water whenever I see a freshwater source – bring on the adventure!”
To follow Adam or donate to the charities he is raising money and awareness for visit www.adamtsultan.com
Whether you’re getting close with nature in the great outdoors or drinking from questionable taps on your gap year, holiday, backpacking or hiking adventure you’re going to need safe access to water.
Coming down with the dreaded ‘Delhi Belly’ or ‘Travellers Diarrhoea’ can wipe out an entire trip or holiday, not to mention the more serious contamination that can be lurking in untreated water.
Travelling outside of the UK, you are exposed to a number of different water contaminants that often force us to rely on bottled water (which is extremely bad for the environment, not to mention the vast expense).
The only way to make sure what is in our water when we’re away from home is to treat it ourselves. But, what is the best method for purifying water?
Let’s take a look at the some of the different methods for treating water:
Boiling water to remove unwanted germs is the oldest trick in the book. It’s extremely effective in eliminating microbiological contaminants from the water. It’s recommended to bring the water to a rolling boil for a minimum of 1 minute to purify it. At an altitude above 2,000 metres you should increase this to 3 minutes.
What does boiling water remove: Microorganisms, including bacteria, viruses and protozoa.
What doesn’t boiling water remove: heavy metals such as lead, debris, nitrates and pesticides.
Advantages of boiling water: Very effective for removing harmful organisms, no cost involved.
Disadvantages of boiling water: Time consuming; access to heating method required E.g. fire, stove or kettle, not effective against potentially harmful chemicals or metals that may be in the water. Smell and taste are not improved.
Purification tablets/halogens, have always been a popular choice for outdoor trekkers and travellers to treat water. For a time, they were the only alternative to boiling water. Essentially they use chemicals to kill off microbiological contaminants from the water. Iodine was traditionally used to purify water. However, in 2009, The European Union (EU) banned the sale of Iodine for use in disinfecting drinking water due to it’s associated health risks. The most common tablets or drops used are made from chlorine, silver or chlorine dioxide.
What do purification tablets kill: Microorganisms such as Bactria, viruses, cysts (depending on type).
What don’t purification tablets remove: Chemicals, pesticides, heavy metals, sediment.
Advantages of purification tablets: Small and Lightweight, cheap and cost effective.
Disadvantages of purification tablets: Usually a minimum wait-time of 30 minutes. Some require a wait-time of up to 4 hours to kill contaminants such as cryptosporidium. After the water has been treated, you then still drink the chemicals and additives. Usually have a foul taste.
Ultraviolet Light (UV)
Using UV light to purify water is great for neutralising microbiological contaminants such as bacteria, viruses and cysts. They are operated using batteries and are usually small (often in a pen form) and lightweight. There are also versions of the technology in water bottles as well. The process is very quick, usually taking 60-90 seconds.
What does UV light kill: Microorganisms, including bacteria, viruses and protozoa.
What doesn’t UV light remove: Chemicals, heavy metals sediments and debris.
Advantages of UV light: Small and lightweight (depending on type).
Disadvantages of UV light: Relies on batteries (restricted access to batteries when travelling). Won’t remove any sediment or debris, taste or odours.
Water filters are fantastic for dealing with all types of different water contaminants (depending on which one you go for). They traditionally involve drawing water through a microscopic hole (pore) by pumping or sucking. Most water filters for outdoor use or travel will be able to deal with bacteria and protozoa (Cryptosporidium and Giardia lamblia for example). Very few are equipped to deal with viruses.
Water filters for gap years, outdoor use and travel, come in a variety of formats including straws, pump units and water bottles.
Some water filters use a simple ‘carbon block’ technology. These are known as charcoal filters or activated carbon filters. Whilst these types of filters are excellent to reduce chemicals, and odours in domestic tap water they are not recommended to be used with untreated water such as rivers, streams or suspect tap water abroad.
What do water filters remove: Most should eliminate bacteria and cysts. Some will filter viruses if they have a combination of technologies or a small enough pore size. Some will even eliminate chemicals, heavy metals and pesticides.
What don’t water filters remove: Depends on type.
Advantages of water filters: Usually light, portable, quick and cost effective (depending on type).
Disadvantages of water filters: Filters will eventually need to be replaced. Flow rate may be slow (depending on type).
Traditionally when choosing a water filter, the most important question was ‘what is the pore size’. When you’re dealing with microbiological contaminants there are 3 key groups that need to be considered.
When talking about the pore size, we refer back to standard technology. The mechanical restriction of the size of the pores has been the traditional measure of what a filter will eliminate. This is not the case with all filters. For example, Water-to-Go uses a unique combination of three technologies, each performs individually but it is the combination that makes it unique. Water-to-Go use a combination of two nano technologies, which not only reduce the pore size to 0.7 microns, but also create a positive hydrostatic charge in the membrane which attract and traps even the smallest of viruses!
In addition to the nano technology used in Water-to-Go filter water bottles, activated carbon is used. However, instead of glueing them into a block (which loses 60% of its efficiency), it is incorporated into the membrane so it works at maximise the benefits.
What does Water-to-Go remove: All microbiological contaminants including Bacteria, Viruses, Protozoa, Cysts, Chemicals like chlorine and fluoride, heavy metals like copper and lead as well as pesticides. See full list.
What doesn’t Water-to-Go remove: The positively charged minerals, E.g. calcium, magnesium, sodium, potassium.
Advantages of Water-to-Go: Small and lightweight. Cost effective. Fast Flow rate (10-12ml per second) Works instantly, doesn’t require batteries, eliminates bad taste and odours.
Disadvantages of Water-to-Go: Replaceable filter (however, these are low cost and last up to 200 litres).
The challenge is to say goodbye to conveniences like pre-packed sandwiches, ready meals and plastic-bottled drinks for a day, a week or the whole month.
Last year almost 850 people took part in the MCS Plastic Challenge, and over 95% said they would continue reducing their plastic use after the challenge was over. The charity hopes even more people will take part in 2016.
Dr. Sue Kinsey, Technical Specialist – Waste, said she was amazed at the lengths people had to go to find products that didn’t contain plastic of any kind. “By its very nature, this is a tricky challenge. It highlights how reliant we have become on plastic. But challengers have been making their own bread, yogurt, cleaning products and bathroom products like mouthwash and sugar scrubs so as not to use plastic containers that are used once, then thrown out.”
Last year, Challengers reported the hardest items to find plastic-free were dried goods like pasta, rice and pulses, along with milk and loo paper. MCS says the amount of plastic litter on our beaches has increased by 180% in the last 20 years and has become a massive threat to marine wildlife. Plastic bags, bottles and tiny plastic pieces are regularly found in the stomachs of turtles and other sea creatures, and in some cases have caused their death from starvation or choking.
“Reducing plastic litter will certainly be an uphill climb – but if we can all cut down the amount we use, there’s no doubt our marine environment will be a healthier place” says Dr. Kinsey.
“We want to change people’s attitudes towards single-use plastics, and to encourage people to value plastic as a resource – not just buying stuff without any thought of the environmental impact” says Dr. Kinsey. “People taking on the Plastic Challenge are often shocked to find out just how much single-use plastic is used every day. Have a go at the Plastic Challenge, even if you can only manage a single day, and you’ll never look at your shopping in the same way again!”
Plastic plays a massive part in all of our lives, from brushing our teeth and showering, to plastic-packed products and cooking. For instance many of us have lunch on the go – and that highlights the extent of our plastic problem – boiled eggs in individual plastic containers, apple slices in plastic bags, pasties on a polystyrene tray wrapped in plastic, plus prepacked sandwiches and bottled drinks. “Our clamour for convenience is bad news for our seas,” says Dr. Kinsey. “Plastic is durable and lightweight, but it’s these properties that allow it to remain in the marine environment for hundreds if not thousands of years. Plastics are among the most persistent synthetic materials in existence and are now a significant and extensive marine pollutant.”
MCS offers help and advice through an online community in the run up to the challenge and all through the month of June. There is also an online shop with products to help you say goodbye to plastic waste. Water-to-Go bottles are available and to celebrate the Plastic Challenge we’ve got 15% off using the code MCS16 at checkout. Not only do you get a discount, we’ll match the discount and donate 15% directly to MCS.
We’re delighted to announce that our filtered water bottles are now available in ALL Rohan stores. Rohan have been stocking Water-to-Go for the past 2 years and due to popular demand, now feature us in all of their stores.
Rohan is the perfect match for Water-to-Go. As the only Travel Clothing specialists on the high street, they have 3 fundamental principles that they stick to – Lightweight, Packable and Fast Drying.
Now, the fast drying would just apply to their clothes, but being lightweight and packable are two principles that Water-to-Go live by. Our 75cl bottle weighs just 138grams and is the perfect size to slip into a backpack or daypack.
It’s not just their philosophy on product that we share. Rohan also shares our passion for the environment. Their environmental policy is one that is very close to our hearts:
“At Rohan we think carefully about how we can grow whilst minimizing our direct environmental impacts. By sourcing responsibly, reducing waste and encouraging reuse we believe we can do our bit to build a sustainable business. We recognize it’s a journey and we continue to look at ways we can improve.
We believe in making a quality product that lasts and that Reduce and Reuse are better aims than recycle.”
Taken from Rohan.co.uk
Our water bottles fall into both of these categories. We are trying to reduce the amount of plastic waste caused by single-use water bottles by encouraging people to use a reusable water bottle with a filter.
Meet JJ Yosh. JJ Yosh is as an Adventurer, Filmmaker, TV and Film Personality, and Eco-visionary using film and TV to inspire people to explore the great outdoors.
JJ is our kind of guy. He’s a chemical engineer and adventurer with a passion for clean energy technology and heart-racing expeditions. Whether it’s rappelling into Thailand’s caverns or exploring Guatemala’s ancient city Tikal, JJ is bound to lead a team there to do it. As a chemist, he has worked with manufacturers to integrate greener practices into their business models. JJ’s work with emission monitoring and environmental clean-up has brought us closer to realising the clean future he imagines, but JJ believes that the answer to our energy problems lies at the source of our energy, not its product.
Ever since JJ could imagine, he dreamt of a world where cities would be built with nature instead of against it. His early fascination with ancient civilisations, the environment, and the great outdoors drove him to search for eco-friendly solutions to better our world.
Over the last 10 years, he has found himself immersed in endless adventures around the world, whether it be climbing mountains, backpacking through forests, or kayaking across the ocean. The more he seeks to explore the world, the more he understands why he is truly here and how important it is to help our planet.
“The environment is huge for me in my life. I am very fascinated with educating myself about various environmental issues, and I am even more passionate about how I can convey these issues to others.
I just want to make it easy and fun for people to be green. And I feel media is a really good tool to attract many more people to the outdoors and to living more green.”
JJ has now started using Water-to-Go filtered water bottles in his adventures and was kind enough to send us his thoughts:
“Water-to-Go is the only water bottle that you will want to take with you everywhere, providing clean water no mater where you go. As an avid runner and adventurer I like everything to be lightweight, fast, and efficient. Water-to-Go allows me to be a minimalist by filtering water as I exercise as opposed to carrying all the water i’ll need for a day or weekend excursion. It’s great because I can be lightweight and still be secure knowing that I won’t run out of water.”
“Speaking from personal experience I know what it is like to run out of water on the trail and even worse to get sick from the water from the streams. A harmless daytime excursion can end up becoming a total nightmare without the proper hydration. Water-to-Go seamlessly solves this by providing water filtration as I drink. Compared to other filters, filtering water can take 20 minutes or longer, but with Water-to-Go, you fill it up, put on the lid, and instantly drink clean water. I think this is why I really love Water-to-Go as its easy and quick. The beauty of traveling to foreign countries and never having to worry about the tap water – Just fill it up, close the lid, and viola clean refreshing water. It really can’t get easier.”
Adventurer and expedition leader Chaz Powell is set to become the first ever person to walk the entire length of the Zambezi River in one outing while raising money and awareness for wildlife conservation. Setting out in August, Chaz will walk for 6 months through the driest and hottest months of the year in order to find safe passage through the floodplains and finishing this gruelling challenge during the November to January wet season.
36 year old Powell from Shropshire is aiming to go one better than David Lemon who, at an incredible 69 years of age, was the first person to walk the Zambezi River in two stages, excluding its path through Angola where he failed to obtain a Visa. Chaz will start this mammoth, 1600 mile, expedition from the Zambezi source in North Western Zambia, passing through Angola for 150 miles, back into Zambia, then crossing through Mozambique until finally reaching the river’s mouth at the Indian Ocean.
Lemon has given Chaz his full support and offers these words of encouragement “Known as ‘The Mighty Zambezi’ throughout most of Africa, The Zambezi River has captured the imagination of Mankind through the ages. Having walked it myself, I know what Chaz Powell faces and wish him all the luck in the world. Believe me Chaz, when you reach the sea at Chinde, it will be the high spot of your life and a moment that will live in your memory for ever.”
“I chose to raise money for the DSWF because they show the same passion and commitment that I’d need for this challenge to fight wildlife crime and protect endangered wildlife. I feel we can work together to make a huge difference.”
The David Shepherd Wildlife Foundation (DSWF) is a non-profit organisation funding key projects in Africa and Asia working to save critically endangered animals in the wild. Founded in 1981 by wildlife artist and conservationist, David Shepherd CBE, the charity works to fight wildlife crime and protect precious wildlife populations by engaging with local people to nurture long-term, sustainable solutions to human-animal conflicts.
“Every year our Wildlife Warrior fundraising volunteers play a critical role in raising much-needed funds to support our conservation projects in Africa and Asia working to protect some of the world’s most endangered and iconic animals,” said DSWF CEO Sally Case. “We are immensely grateful to Chaz for committing such an amazing amount of energy and time on behalf of the charity. To walk the Zambezi River, solo and unaided, is such a massive challenge both physically and mentally and we will support him with every step.”
He plans to walk solo and unaided, relying on help from people along the river for food and accommodation as well as carrying all equipment needed to survive alone such as camping equipment and dry foods.
“Being a passionate adventurer I want to challenge myself in the wildest of environments and have an itch to walk a relatively unexplored region” says Chaz. “My main aim during the walk is to raise money and awareness for wildlife conservation throughout Africa, and to highlight the growing concerns of wildlife crimes happening all over the world. My dream to have an education scheme running throughout Africa educating people to understand and protect wildlife from an early age is something I share with DSWF.”
When asked about the challenge that may befall him on his epic journey this summer, Chaz seems unfazed by the dangers “The terrain will be testing, the heat will be a big factor, the wildlife and mosquitoes will be trying to eat me, border crossings might be tricky. I will encounter Lions, elephants, hippos, rhinos, buffalo, crocs, snakes, leopards, cheetahs, wild dogs and a fair few more. To be honest there is quite a lot that could go wrong. Guess that makes it all the more exciting and challenging for me.”
“The Water-to-Go bottle will make the crucial difference in obtaining safe clean drinking water, whilst hiking along the wilds of the Mighty Zambezi River. Recently, whilst traversing La Palma, I used my Water-to-Go bottle to drink from streams, rivers, canals and even water dripping from rocks, it made all the difference.”
Chaz has a wealth of expedition experience “I’m a summer mountain leader and have recently became an expedition leader. I have walked several long distance paths in the UK including the UK’s longest river (The Severn) over 12 days.” The 36 year old from Shropshire is not taking the expedition lightly and has been doing training walks along the Zambezi, walking with a guide and armed guard through the Mosi-o-Tunya national park, learning how to walk amongst wild animals, as well as a walk along the Zambezi Gorges (one of the trickiest sections of the expeditions) and a walk through the African bush.
“During January I was on an expedition hitchhiking to Europe’s most Northern Point on a small budget to film and admire the Northern Lights. I have just finished walking the length of La Palma the world’s steepest island. It is such a mega diverse island with jungles, caves, volcanoes, ice capped mountains, alpine forests and some of the most amazing sites I have ever witnessed.”