Manisha carries her water bottle with her everywhere she goes. Partly because she wants to be able to drink it whenever she wants and mostly because she doesn’t want to collect mineral water bottles that are made of plastic. A problem she had been facing since long was the unavailability of drinking water sources she can fill her bottle from. Despite her unwillingness, she was forced to buy mineral water bottles because of this problem.
Manisha completed her bachelors in Electronics & Communications from National College of Engineering and during casual conversations with her friends, she figured most of them were facing the same problem. Then, an idea hit her mind and she presented this at Udhyami Yuva Challenge along with her friend Nimesh. Read on to find out her solution to this problem.
1. Can you tell us about your idea of a water dispenser?
The idea is very simple actually. Our plan is to have a station to keep a large water dispenser where people can drink or fill any amount of water by paying certain money for it. The water will be purified and clear whose process will be visible to the users too. We haven’t decided where we want to keep the dispenser at but it’ll definitely be in a place with more flow of people.
2. Is this idea similar to the one that’s located in Lalitpur?
I honestly didn’t know about this machine until after I submitted my idea and someone referred about this machine to me. And yes, the idea is somewhat similar.
3. What social problem are you trying to solve with this idea?
We’re trying to make this available for pedestrians who want to drink water and also to save plastic waste coming from mineral water bottles. This way people have a choice to not buy plastic water bottles that either end up cluttering the landfills or taking free space at their homes.
4. What are the challenges that you might face while implementing this idea?
The challenges would be in terms of technical difficulties as we’ll need a quality dispenser that we can completely rely on to give undiluted water to the users. We’re planning to make the machine here itself so I think making it would be challenging. Another challenge might be in terms of security as people might misuse the machine as it’ll be in a public place. Another could be from the municipality side if they will allow us or not. Plus, it’s time-consuming to come up with the design and make the machine ready as well.
5. How was your experience at the bootcamp?
I wasn’t able to attend all of the sessions because of my unstable internet connection. I genuinely felt that the sessions were very effective. What I liked the most about the bootcamp was that there was interaction with the trainers and everybody was giving feedback to my ideas so I was able to touch on aspects that I hadn’t thought of before. I felt that the sessions could’ve been even more effective because of the enthusiasm of both trainers and participants, but I can’t really complain because of the current situation.
6. Are there any particular sessions that you liked the most? Or other topics you think could’ve been added to the bootcamp to make it better?
I think legal and goal-setting sessions were very interesting and engaging. Since, I am not from an accounting background, I found the session on Accounting very difficult to understand. I feel like if the Business Model Canvas session was included in the Bootcamp then that would’ve been even better.
7. What were your expectations from the bootcamp and were they met?
Yeah, there were so many topics that were covered in the bootcamp which I hadn’t even thought of. So, the sessions were very beneficial for me. The only problem from my side was I couldn’t participate in live interaction because of my internet problem.
8. Regardless of winning or not winning the seed fund, how will you go ahead with your idea?
We’ll be starting by designing our machine if we get the seed fund and if we don’t win then we’ll probably invest ourselves and go ahead with the idea. We’ll also be seeking investors later when the idea has come into life.
For more information about this idea, connect with Manisha at firstname.lastname@example.org
Interviewed and article by Yangzum Lama.