As highlighted in my previous blog, today is Blog Action Day! Here at MADRE, we are participating in this global event by blogging about water, the dire situations those living in many countries face in the way of access to clean water, and what MADRE and our partners are doing to broaden this access.
As mentioned previously, 884 million people - approximately one in eight people - do not have access to safe water supplies. Because women and girls around the world are often responsible for bringing water to their homes, it is also women and girls that are most detrimentally impacted by the lack of access to clean water; they must walk miles every day to fetch water, find some way to supply water to both crops and family, and care for family members that get sick from water-borne diseases. Without addressing the water crisis, development that upholds women's human rights is impossible.
My previous blog entry detailed MADRE's work with the Clean Water Project in Gaza, where MADRE is helping to install water filters throughout Gaza city. In a completely different area of the world, MADRE and our sister organization Wangki Tangni are training Indigenous women in Nicaragua to sustain a clean water culture through our 'Women Waterkeepers' project. In Nicaragua, the Indigenous population live without health or sanitation infrastructure because the government has not been committed to building this infrastructure.
As a result, Indigenous Nicaraguan children are particularly prone to contract, and die from, the water-borne illnesses that are brought when seasonal flooding carries raw sewage and other contaminants into their water supply. MADRE and Wangki Tangni are working together to reduce the incidence of water-borne disease by training Indigenous women and their family members to maintain latrines and wells, and building a clean water culture through educational posters, seminars and radio programs.
For more information about MADRE's projects, and information on how to donate, click here.