The Water Crisis
Water … more crucial for survival above all other resources on earth. And yet, right now over one billion men, women, and children on the planet drink unsafe water. We believe that the lack of access to safe drinking water is the primary cause of hunger, disease and poverty throughout the developing world. We would like to expand on that idea and explain in more detail why we believe this.
Without water, crops and livestock wither and die. People go hungry and become weak. Weakness allows disease to run its course and finally the “Quiet Killer” – hunger, takes its toll. At this moment, many communities throughout the world are suffering needlessly because water is either scarce or polluted or may not exist at all. A sad irony is that often there is lifesaving water just 100 feet away! Directly underground so near, yet too far for people lacking the tools and knowledge to reach it. But with technologies ranging from simple and inexpensive to state of the art, Global Water is helping poor communities in developing countries find new supplies of clean, life sustaining water. And when clean, fresh water begins to flow in a community, a whole new life begins – free from the threat of food shortages and the myriad of health related problems associated with hunger.
Simply put – the lack of safe drinking water is the primary cause of disease in the world today. Everyday, tens of thousands of people die from causes directly related to contaminated water. And for those who survive, without good health, there is little chance for a normal and productive life. A surprising statistic to many is that contaminated water causes 80% of the health problems throughout the world. Much of the reason is because in rural areas of developing countries, the only water source for people to wash with and drink from is often a badly polluted shallow well (less than 10 feet deep) or mud-hole used by both animals and humans. In those areas where there’s actually a stream or river, they’re often polluted as well, because animal and human wastes are emptied directly into it without proper treatment.
Water is the lifeblood of a community. When water is unsafe to drink, the entire community suffers. Sick children lack the energy to go to school and learn. Weak young men lack the drive to work hard – and so poverty continues. In rural communities, it is women and children who are responsible for locating and transporting water. Fulfilling this daily responsibility often leaves little or no time for women to pursue developmental opportunities and for the young to get an education – and so poverty continues. Nothing changes a community like providing a source of clean water for the first time. It creates a complete transformation. It has the power to actually stop the cycle of poverty. The entire community becomes healthier. For the first time, children become eager to learn while young men and women are able to work harder to produce an income and more food. Everyone can envision better futures and begin working towards them. Giving clean water to a poverty stricken community is like giving a blood transfusion to a dying man. Clean water and latrines gives people the opportunity and the dignity to lead healthy lives, pursue education, and fulfill their lives to the fullest. This leads to new potential, new hope for a better tomorrow and a new life.