Almost a billion people in our world are living without access to clean water. As a result, the leading cause of death worldwide is illness due to waterborne disease, lack of sanitation, and poor hygiene practices. In fact, every 15 seconds, a child dies due to water-related causes. What’s more, lack of clean water affects children’s education and families’ well-being because children and women walk hours each day to gather water instead of going to school or spending time on other productive activities.
Millions of African people are still deprived of the privilege of having access to water in their immediate environment. This lack forces millions of people, mostly women and children, to undertake a journey of several miles, sometimes twice a day, to the river or ground water hole. Often, they find that the water there is dirty, potentially bearing disease, parasites, and mosquitoes that carry malaria. Then, they start the hours long journey back home—where they are exposed to danger and abuse—with an average of 40 pounds of water on their heads.
Water, sanitation, and hygiene. Each is essential to a healthy life, yet in Sierra Leone and Liberia, these things can’t be taken for granted. More than half of people living in rural areas have no access to safe water, and as many as 80 percent have no access to a decent toilet. As a result, thousands of people die each year from water-related illness. Nazarene churches in these West African countries are working with communities to implement WASH projects that combine water, sanitation, and hygiene.
Two of the major causes of child death in developing countries are unsafe water and lack of hygiene. Health awareness training and the installation of tubewells and slab latrines significantly improve sanitation and can save many lives. A tubewell is used by several families. Local NCM staff are responsible for installation and for teaching the families how to maintain the tubewell, as well as offer health and hygiene training. Safe water is also important for successful animal husbandry and gardening.
Almost a billion people in our world are living without access to clean water. As a result, the leading cause of death worldwide is illness due to waterborne disease, lack of sanitation, and poor hygiene practices. What’s more, in some places, children and women walk hours each day to gather water instead of going to school or spending time on other productive activities.
NCM partners with local churches to provide communities with safe water through the implementation of a comprehensive WASH program that includes water supply, sanitation, and hygiene promotion. Safe water is provided through resources including wells, cisterns, and filtration technologies. Using resources and education, local churches also mobilize their communities to promote ongoing health and disease-prevention through the promotion of safe sanitation and hygienic practices.
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