March 22nd marks World Water Day; an international observance day first set up by the United Nations 25 years ago. ICS team leader Scott tells us what they are doing in Birisiri, Bangladesh to mark the occasion.
This day was brought about to highlight the importance of fresh water around the globe, and also to enable better access to clean drinking water, decent toilets and better hygiene. Bangladesh is a developing country that does not have proportionate population to landmass ratio, nor does the country have sufficient clean water or enough quality toilets.
A lack of these key sanitation aspects not only harms people directly and creates barriers in people’s lives, but it also has a serious knock on effect to others that don’t necessarily face these significant problems directly. Water Aid report that approximately 85 million people don’t have a decent toilet in Bangladesh, and that 1 in 7 people don’t have clean water. Furthermore, diseases and illness can be a direct result of drinking dirty water and not having enough good quality toilets.
The task of providing sanitation to Bangladesh, a country highly prone to floods, earthquakes, droughts and cyclones, is very difficult, however our ICS team in Northern Bangladesh have been working hard this past week to do just that.
The team have observed that toilets and tube wells in nearby communities are insufficient and are currently being used by multiple families; as many as 20 people daily. The team are now helping to provide new tube water wells and toilets to three communities in desperate need of them, and have been hard at work digging holes and pumping for clean water deep beneath the earth. One of our in-country volunteers, Sohel, explains:
“The change that we are making is so important to these communities, because many people do not understand the importance of clean water or having the correct facilities for effective sanitation. Now more communities are becoming aware of why it is important.”
The team have also planned and delivered a number of workshops today and this past week explaining the importance of clean water, how to save water better and also how important proper sanitation is.
Wherever you are, Happy World Water Day from our ICS team in Bangladesh, and everyone here at Y Care International!