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    Did you know… 70% of the world’s population wash their clothes by hand

    It all began when British engineer Nav Sawhney was on a sabbatical in South India...

    He saw women and children handwashing clothes and bedding in buckets, lakes and rivers for hour after backbreaking hour. He discovered that it’s their only option as 70% of the world’s population have no access to an electric washing machine; that’s over 5.5 billion people!

    Washing clothes by hand can take up to 20 hours per week – a critical barrier to paid work and education for anyone displaced or on low-income. So, in 2018, Nav set up the Washing Machine Project. Developing the first affordable, electricity-free, manual crank washing machine designed for humanitarian purposes.

    It’s a washing machine that can be operated by anyone, anywhere. It’s long-lasting, easy to maintain and built for hard-to-reach places anywhere in the world. It saves 50% of water, is 75% faster and it takes away water better too. Plus, it saves people from the usual handwashing problems: chronic back pain, joint pain and skin irritation.

    TWMP’s mission is to empower women and children with the time to take charge of their lives, by providing displaced and low-income communities with an accessible, off-grid washing solution.

    At RS, we are honoured to partner The Washing Machine Project to improve lives and inspire a more sustainable world.

    Built from the Heart

    Back in 2022, 350 colleagues across the UK spent time at The Washing Machine Experience at our Corby site. By sharing this one-day experience they not only helped build 32 of the Divya version 1.55 washing machines but also learnt and understood what life was really like for those who endure the back-breaking task of hand-washing clothes in rivers and streams, using the time they could have otherwise spent going to school, playing with friends or more meaningful and joyful tasks.

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    "We are a global community with responsibility to each other and the planet. If we work together we can innovate solutions that empower communities and promote a better, more equal world for everyone"

    Nav Sawhney; Inventor & Founder of The Washing Machine Project

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    Nav and his team at The Washing Machine Project are working to further improve the design and to broaden its humanitarian, sustainable and educational impact.

    To continue its work, the project requires essential funding which will enable them to alleviate the burden of washing clothes for thousands of hard-hit families and communities around the world.

    If you would like to donate to this worthy cause, please click the button below


    Patricia's Story

    Patricia is a 14-year old orphan, who attends the Sserinya Primary School in Uganda. Her ambition is to become a surgeon.

    She has two uniforms and prioritises clean clothes over everything. Patricia is constantly washing clothes – so much so, that she has fainted from the sheer volume of clothes she washed and has missed classes and lunch in order to complete the task.

    She wants more time to be able to focus on her education.

    TWMP have given her the means, through the Divya washing machine, to significantly reduce the time spent on washing clothes and give her back the time to use on her schooling.

    Everyone deserves the dignity of clean clothes.

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    “I feel very good. Happy. Because we are not going to be so tired. We are going to save time for revising our books and doing our homework”

    Patricia - Student at Sserinya School, Uganda

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