WATER SPELLS TRANSFORMATION
Nearly one million people die each year from water, sanitation, and hygiene-related diseases, and every two minutes, a child dies from a water-related disease. One in three schools lack access to basic water and sanitation, contributing to the third leading cause of childhood death: water-related disease.
The staggering statistics are a stark reminder of the urgency we face. Safe water and sanitation at home are not just a matter of convenience; they're a matter of life and death. Beyond mortality rates, access to safe water means improved health, privacy, and safety, particularly for women and girls. It's a gateway to empowerment, offering women, children, and families the opportunities to pursue activities and ambitions outside of water collection and taking the stress of accessing water or sanitation off their shoulders.
“Providing access to safe, affordable water is an investment in human potential,” explained White. “We don’t provide one-time interventions. In breaking down the financial barriers to access between people in poverty and lasting access to safe water and sanitation, we are investing in healthy lives and communities.”
In the face of climate change, we will all face the impact of water scarcity, but those living in poverty, often residing in regions with precarious water access, are the least equipped to weather these changes. They are less prepared to face the effects of climate change, like temperature extremes, floods, and droughts.
By 2025, at least half of the world’s population is projected to live in water-stressed areas due to climate change, with low-income families bearing the greatest brunt of this crisis. Access to sustainable, safe water and improved sanitation solutions can support climate resiliency for the people who need it the most.
As the Water.org co-founders put it, sustainable water and sanitation solutions aren't just about survival; they're about resilience in the face of an uncertain future.
Toronto Star Newspapers Limited