This is World Water Week. And in Stockholm, ministers from around the world are meeting to discuss water, sanitation and hygiene. African ministers at the forum are calling for greater attention and resources to be paid to the issues as part of efforts to end poverty.
Among those attending is Mamphono Khaketla, who is Lesotho’s minister of natural resources. From Stockholm, she spoke to English to Africa reporter Joe De Capua about why sanitation and hygiene are needed to end poverty.
A lack of access to clean water kills nearly two million children a year and stunts prospects for economic growth in the world's poorest countries, a new United Nations report said. More than 2.6 billion people do not have access to proper sanitation and dirty water claims more lives than AIDS or conflicts, according to the UN's annual Human Development Report, released in South Africa.
Survivors of the earthquake that devastated Peru in August of 2007 are still desperately in need of help. There are roughly 24,000 people still living in approximately 100 camps, waiting to return to their homes.
"I'm living here at the camp with my three daughters," said Maria Pacha Chavez. "We are 40 affected families amounting to 162 people between children, the elderly, men and women."
In response to recurring health problems in shelters, a UNICEF-supported initiative is educating children about hygiene and sanitation in order to prevent disease. A group of actors known as The Kallpa Group visits the camps to perform entertaining presentations involving characters such as Mrs. Latrine and Mr. Cleanliness.
Poor sanitation, hygiene, and unsafe water claim the lives of more than a million children under the age of five every year. The estimated 2.6 billion people without access to proper sanitation are vulnerable to disease, malnutrition, poverty, and death.
To focus attention on what it has deemed a global crisis, the United Nations has declared 2008 the International Year of Sanitation. According to Sha Zukang, UN Under-Secretary General for Economic and Social Affairs, “Sanitation is not a dirty word; it is a critical factor in human welfare and sustainable development. We need to put the spotlight on this silent crisis.”
The Globalization Research Center-Africa (GRCA) and the Globalization Research Network (GRN) held an international conference, "Global Cities: Water, Infrastructure and Environment" in the summer of 2006 as the first activity under the newest GRCA Signature Project area--Water, Urban Governance and Poverty Alleviation. Other activities in this area included the provision of funding to UCLA graduate students Laura Russ and Matthew Graham in the Department of Urban Planning, whose work contributed to understanding the scope of the issues around water service delivery. The present workshop is the third activity under this signature project area.
Eco-Sanitation, water pollution, poverty and waste burning: Final Evaluation Report of the MATRA project in Romania carried out by WECF and Medium&Sanitas.
This project was designed to address drinking water quality improvement, however, during the project, 2 major problems where identified, which WECF wants to bring to the attention of policy makers in Romania and abroad. These are, namely, the need to urgently address growing poverty and consequent malnutrition among children, as well as burning of plastic waste in home ovens due to lack of waste treatment, increased poverty and lack of information about health dangers.
The Tonle Sap is the largest freshwater lake in Southeast Asia, but
provinces around it have limited access to safe water and sanitation. An ADB project is providing a solution.
Farmer Vorn Mao used to collect water for her family from foul smelling and hazardous streams in a remote village in Cambodia.
In the dry season, the 36 year-old mother of two would resort to digging a hole near her house in search of water, or trekking two kilometers or more to streams where many people also washed their clothes or bathed.
Without the means to treat the water, she and her family often suffered from diarrhea, fever, and skin problems.
Now, times have changed and Vorn Mao and her family and neighbors have safe, clean, and readily accessible water supplies, thanks to a deep well pump installed as part of the Tonle Sap Rural Water Supply and Sanitation Sector Project.
In the remote town of Takhtbai in the North West Frontier Province, people took to the streets during a march to raise awareness during the biannual Child Health and Sanitation Week.
During the week, events to reduce child deaths and disease by promoting better health, sanitation and hygiene practices were launched in six districts across the country. Activities included the provision of free immunization and deworming services for children as well as offering information about the importance of exclusive breast feeding, Oral Rehydration Salts and safe drinking water.
Three years ago, residents of coastal and upland villages in San Fernando City polluted their drinking water with their own excreta. Today, they take pains to practice safe hygiene and sanitation. An innocent looking dry toilet and an untiring city mayor propelled this shift through a 2-town ecological sanitation pilot project that has evolved into a citywide movement. Can the city carry the momentum forward to the entire province and neighboring towns?
water quality has large economic and quality of life costs, in terms of
health impacts and foregone revenues. According to the Philippine
government's monitoring data, just over 36 percent of the country's
river systems are classified as sources of public water supply and that
up to 58 percent of groundwater sampled is contaminated with coliform
and needs treatment. Approximately 31 percent of illnesses monitored
for a five-year period were also caused by water-borne sources, and