Sunday, March 22, 2009

World Water Day 2009


Today is World Water Day.

I haven't seen or heard anything about it from Bloggers Unite, but I am going to blog about it anyway.

What is World Water Day?

World Water Day is the official UN-designated day dedicated to water issues. It's a key date to champion the right of people everywhere to affordable, safe drinking water, close to home.

Why are good water supplies important?

Because... Clean water reduces the spread of diarrheal diseases that kill 5,000 children a day.

Because... Accessible water supplies mean women can spend time working to earn money or caring for their families, rather than walking for hours in search of water.

Because... Sufficient water supplies mean there is water available for washing and watering gardens, as well as drinking and cooking.

What can YOU do on World Water Day?

There’s lots you can do to become a WASH (water, sanitation, and hygiene) champion! Learn more, share what you learn with others, and support organizations like WaterAid, that exist to help the world's most vulnerable communities gain access to clean water and sanitation, close to their homes.

Make a donation online
Visit the official UN World Water Day website
Sign our petition asking Congress to combat global poverty
Take part in the Walk for Water in Zeeland, MI
Organize your own World Water Day Walk for Water
Organize your friends into a community of WASH champions by starting a giving circle using an online personal fundraising page
Visit our display at the American Museum of Natural History's Water Resource Fair in New York
Spread the word about our work:
Declare your commitment by joining our Facebook group
Keep current by following us on Twitter and retweeting our tweets
Become our friend on MySpace and leave a message
Watch and rate our YouTube videos
Post a WaterAid America banner on your website or profile
Sign up for our enews and forward it to your friends
Download the WaterAid iGoogle theme

Go to this website to donate or to learn more about the above items.

Here is the information about the picture at the top of this post:

Ester Bizwick, aged 55, from Wilson Village in the Machinga District of Malawi knows how important clean water is for poor families worldwide. Here she describes how her life has improved since gaining access to a clean water supply supported by WaterAid:

"I used to draw water from the Lisanjala River. I used to go four times a day with all the children. There were lots of problems from the water. Children and parents would get sick from the diarrhea and we’d frequently go to the hospital which is 17 kilometers away. It was taking too long to get to the hospital.

"It was difficult before the [new] water [point], we were unable to grow vegetables because the water was not close. We didn’t have adequate food. We would grow cassava in the fields to sell for clothes, food and soap. But we didn’t have enough food to eat.

"We have had our [water] connection recently and we have been growing vegetables to eat instead of buying them.

"Since the water came our lives have changed. We are able to concentrate on our families and the children are not getting sick any more so we are saving time and being more productive.

"The time is being used to farm, look after children, and bathe."

Photo: WaterAid / Layton Thompson

7 comments:

A. said...

Also Mothering Sunday. A good combination, don't you think?

A. said...

It occurs to me you might not know what Mothering Sunday is - the UK version of Mother's Day. It has been celebrated on the mid-Lent Sunday for the last 400 years or so. It seems to me a good time to think of mothers around the world who don't have our advantages, and in particular the mothers, not just in Malawi, who have to spend hours fetching water from distant rivers, springs or if they're lucky, pumps.

I consider WaterAid to be one of "my" charities.

frostygirl said...

Water is so important, but mankind takes it for granted so it is good to have this type of event to highlight the situation in the world. The third world countries really need help in this area and every dollar spent saves a persons life or livelyhood.

I notice that water is becoming an issue in USA as well and it would be prudent for an awareness campaign to be started now to teach every citizen to use water sparingly. As an experiment take one day in your life and check to see how much water you use and then make a note of how much you wasted. For eg when you are brushing your teeth do you let the water run for a while before rinsing your mouth? Check to see if you are using more water to flush your toilet than is necessary, over here we place a brick or some similar object in our toilet cistern to displace the water thereby using that much less for each toilet flush. There are so many ways of saving water and if everyone is made aware of them.

Grumpus said...

Where I live (Vancouver) we have one of the finest tap water systems, lots of high tech filtration plus the source is pure glacial goodness to begin with. But the bottled water trend is still huge(my observation is this water snobbery is linked with the hyper-health-consciousness bordering on narcissism that is indulged in well-off countries, where only the perceived 'finest' can pass our lips). For example one of the 'perks' at my workplace is chilled purified water that they cart in by the gallon-load and everyone drinks it in favour of the sordid public water. One day i was washing out my mug (because Your Mother Doesn't Work Here, the sign informs me) and someone came in all expectantly and then slumped in dismay to see that the water cooler was empty. "We're OUT OF WATER!" he groaned, his morning in shambles. "No, there's plenty!" I said, indicating the icy bounty flowing over my hands. "HA HA!" my co-worker said, completely without irony, as if I was pulling his leg...

Debbie said...

you have inspired an idea for me, thank you. I am preparing to launch a product that is related to water. I believe I now know where a portion of the proceeds can go.

Thanks. :)

Janet said...

Our water comes from an underground spring on our property. Which is good, because the city water system is not the greatest and people go without water for days at a time every couple of months or so. We're very aware of water around here as every mountaintop removal project destroys a few more wells and buries a few more streams. Of course it's not remotely the problem previously experiened in Malawi and other areas, but I wonder if it might not become so.

Relax Max said...

Thank you all for your thoughtful comments and input. Africa is a main interest to me, and water is so important to the whole world. What you have all said is very interesting to me.

Blog Widget by LinkWithin