Solvatten’s mission is to provide people living in developing countries with safe and hot water in a portable, environmentally friendly way.
Two charitable organizations support this mission: Solvatten Charitable Foundation, Sweden and Solvatten Charitable Foundation, USA.
Lack of safe water, poor hygiene and poor health are daily challenges for millions of people living in poverty. Worldwide, 1 out of 8 people live without access to safe water at home. Those same people are dependent on firewood and charcoal for boiling and treating their water.
“To use Solvatten is a step closer to have clean, safe and hot water running from the tap inside the house. It will take very long before we have piped water and electricity in the community, but Solvatten helps now.”
– Janice, small scale farmer in Bungoma, Western Kenya
Making a difference by combining a passion for research and creativity…
Born and raised in Sweden, Petra Wadström is the founder and CEO of Solvatten, a social enterprise with the mission of providing people in developing countries with access to safe and hot water in a portable, environmentally friendly way.
Petra began her career in the field of biochemical medical research. After her studies in biochemisty, and molecular biology at Karolinska Institute in Sweden, she moved to Switzerland for an opportunity to work as a biochemical medical research technician at the University of Basel. After 6 years in Switzerland, Petra returned to Sweden’s Karolinska Institute and began to work at Statens Bacteriological Institute( SBL).
While Petra’s days were focused on furthering scientific research, her evenings were spent honing another passion – art. She spent time taking art classes, drawing, painting, and designing unique products, something that would soon become the foundation for her first business, PetrArt Invent. In time, she shifted her focus from science to art while also starting a family and working as an art teacher and advisor for art education.
In the late 90s, Petra moved to Australia with her husband and four children. While teaching art to local Aboriginal women, she was struck by their struggle to keep themselves and their children healthy. Petra also noticed the abundance of sunshine in the country and began to wonder what more could be done with its solar energy. After leaving Australia, Petra travelled to Indonesia where she continued to see the health problems facing women and children. She began to realize that the lack of access to safe and hot water was a main issue keeping people from living a healthy lifestyle.
Instead of waiting for someone to do something about the lack of access to safe and hot water, Petra took it upon herself to turn her thoughts into action and this is where the idea of Solvatten was born. Combining her passion for art with her education and career in science, Petra quickly got to work and designed the Solvatten portable safe and hot water drinking system. Since the founding of Solvatten in 2006, Petra and her team have successfully deployed 70,000 Solvatten units reaching nearly 400,000 people in over 20 developing countries throughout the world.
Today, Petra focuses the majority of her time on Solvatten and its mission to provide everyone with the right to safe and hot water. In her spare time, she continues to enjoy art and spending time with her seven, soon to be eight grandchildren.
“My background in science and art has helped me to think outside the box by combining the elements of research and creativity. I believe that my passion for innovative sustainable solutions that really change lives for the better comes from having a practical mind.” – Petra Wadström, CEO and Founder of Solvatten
For more information or to discuss speaking opportunities, please contact:
Head of Marketing and Communications