Rainchutes, an innovative project from PITCHAfrica is an initiative that repurposes old parachutes to harvest rainwater in order to collect drinking water in semi-arid areas with occasional rainfall. These areas are the ones in which roofs of thatch and mud is not a feasible option for rainwater catchment systems.
The project is being carried out in collaboration with ATOPIAResearch. It offers a domestic rainwater system using withdrawn parachutes. The system is lightweight, portable and low cost as well. This could make a difference in those water deficit areas, which receives appropriate amounts of rainfall.
The organizers of Rainchutes say that in areas where rainfall is almost 600 mm annually a Vietnam era Parachute can harvest 25,000 litres of water every year. Luckily, two thirds of the African continent receives this sufficient amount enough for the harvest annually.
The water collected will come to 70 litres of water everyday round the year in a household where there are a maximum of 14 people. The project also requires basic water storage facilities, a water storage and filter system.
Apart from collecting rainwater, Rainchutes are great for demonstrating the principles of rainwater harvesting . They also help to educate children the fundamentals of water harvesting systems.