Well, it's officially summer! This week marks the kickoff of the swelter and humidity to come in July and August. Where SAME SKY works in Sub Saharan Africa there is only one answer for these spells of extreme dryness and heat: a tall glass of clean water. But the truth is that many people around the world don’t have access to this simple luxury. More than 800 million, or one in nine people, don’t have the ability to drink clean water and there are approximately 30,000 deaths every week that occur from unsafe water and unhygienic living conditions. Of these 30,000 deaths 90% of them are from children under five years of age, as their youthful bodies aren’t strong enough to fight off the disease-ridden water that they are drinking.
Women and children are the most affected by this lack of sanitary water, as they are the ones walking collectively over 40 billion hours every year to retrieve it. This time spent walking deprives these individuals of schooling, work and taking care of their families. Also, it puts them at an added risk as their three hour walk is often very dangerous and the women and children are subjected to harassment and sexual assault. Simply put, women and children should not have to bear these consequences due to the lack of clean water.
SAME SKY has long admired Charity: Water for helping to fix this problem by not only providing clean water but by also introducing new sanitary hand washing stations in areas where people are suffering the backlash of dirty water. Along with providing clean water, these women and children who were spending precious time retrieving dirty water can now have access to clean water as well as freedom to pursue an education or earn extra income for their families. Also, according to Charity: Water if a clean water source is placed near a school it can increase attendance, especially in young girls, giving them a better opportunity to learn skills that will lead to future successes. (Statistics and image from charitywater.org)
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