Children are in desperate need of safe drinking water
1.8 million people, mainly children, die from diarrhoeal diseases each year with 88% of these deaths attributed to unsafe water supplies, inadequate sanitation and hygiene (World Health Organisation). The story is no different in poor rural areas of Kenya and Uganda, where clean, safe water supplies are few and far between.
Children are often responsible for collecting water for their families each day. This may mean walking up to seven miles to fetch water from sources that are dependent on the rainy season. Children can end up missing vital hours of lesson time, and when they do arrive at school, can be too tired to learn.
When there is no safe drinking water, there is also usually no water for teachers and children to wash their hands after visiting the toilet. This leads to many children and teachers missing school through sickness, which can develop into serious and life threatening illnesses.
Without readily available water, families depending on subsistence farming and livestock often struggle during times of drought. This ultimately results in food shortages, keeping families trapped in poverty long-term.
By ensuring that schools have sustainable access to clean water, we will make a fundamental difference to the lives of thousands of children. Giving the gift of safe water means that children are free from thirst and they will have a better chance of growing up healthy and educated. We can achieve this through two very simple solutions:
From previous experience, we know that three water tanks (10,000 litre capacity each) are able to store enough water for children and teachers to use during the dry season once other nearby sources have been exhausted. The tanks collect water during the rainy season from guttering installed on classrooms, providing a cost effective and simple solution to water problems at schools.
Boreholes benefit thousands of individuals from school communities, also providing a sustainable water source for livestock and crop production.
Borehole in the Villages - Counselor Speech