Children in our communities in northern India do not have safe drinking water in their villages. They are part of the 785 million people* who have no access to one of the most basic needs, clean drinking water. The impact of this takes lives. Each day, more than 800 children die from this unsafe water. Death due to diarrhea carried fouled water, hygiene, and the resulting lack of sanitation. They do not have the basic requirements to wash their hands, cook food, bathe, grow crops or drink.
What does it mean to not to have safe water
What does it mean when a child has only a scarce supply of water? For most of us we go to the kitchen or bathroom and turn on the tap. But for millions that supply is reduced or non-existent. It impacts families and communities and can keep people locked in extreme situations for years or even generations.
When children are continually sick due to being more vulnerable to the effects of polluted or non-existent water, they can’t attend school. Women and girls are often the ones tasked with carrying water for the family so they are impacted in major ways too. UNICEF says 200 million hours are spent carrying water every day.
It’s so easy
Most of us don’t even think when we turn on the tap to fill a glass or wash our dishes. It’s so natural, we do it many times every day.
The World Bank says promoting good hygiene is one of the most cost-effective health interventions. **
The benefits of providing clean water for the villages is not only connected to child health, safety and education. Every $1 invested in water and toilets returns an average of $4 in increased productivity. ***
Having access to clean safe water is everything in the process of building a safe living environment. It enables children to be well, food preparation to be safe, families and communities to practice better hygiene. It enables more children to safely go to school and get their education.
The bores we dig must go down to a depth of 122 meters (approximately 400 feet) to reach the safe water level. Anything less is potentially very polluted. We are providing safe drinking water for children and communities and this is saving lives, helping re-write children’s life stories and turning around futures.
* WHO/UNICEF Joint Monitoring Programme (JMP) Report 2019
** Disease Control Priorities, third edition (volume 2), 2016