Saturday, February 17, 2007

Global water crisis...

It’s a fact…

"Worldwide 1.2 billion people still lack access to clean water and 2.6 billion lack adequate sanitation. While each person in the UK or the USA sends 50 litres down the drain each day simply by flushing the toilet, many poor people survive on less than 5 liters of contaminated water a day."

In Sierra Leone, this too is a reality. Every day I see men, women and children walking up and down the streets with buckets of water on their heads. Some of this water comes from proper stand pipes, some comes from illegal tapping into water pipes. People literally break water lines on the street to get access to water. This is illegal of course, but when you have no other water source nearby you aren’t left with many options. Some people have to walk very far to get a bucket of water. And often the water collected is contaminated. As I am writing this, there have been reports of a Cholera outbreak (not yet laboratory confirmed) in Tonkolili district. Earlier this year we had Cholera cases in the Freetown area. Even in the clinic I am again seeing an increase in the number of diarrhea cases. Annoying of course, since this is a preventable illness. However, in itself diarrhea isn’t a huge problem, but when combined with lack of knowledge, it becomes a HUGE problem because children end up dying due to dehydration. Unfortunately, mothers here are more likely to give their toddler tetracycline capsules or some kind of injection, than to give ORS! Sad but true.

The question remains: "what can we do to make a difference?"

“Like hunger, it [the water crisis] is a silent emergency experienced by the poor and tolerated by those with the resources, the technology and the political power to end it.”

Based on: “Beyond scarcity: Power, poverty and the global water crisis”
For more information:

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Thanks San for reminding me that I am blessed with all the water I do have ... Even if it means bucket showers...
Love mom

~ Act Justly. Love Mercy. Walk Humbly. micah 6:8 ~