There is no life without water


2 million of people die every year because of clear water shortages and lack of proper sanitary conditions; it’s as if a city the size of Manchester was wiped out completely.

Children are most often deprived of their life or health; they are least immune to bacteria found in contaminated water.

Four children die every minute because of diarrhea and dehydration.




You either go to get water, or you go to school

Thousands of children face the choice day by day. And they don’t ponder over it; they can get by without education, but they would die without water. They would certainly love to attend school, but without their help their family households would cease to function. There is no choice.

They have no choice either when the lack of water takes away their health. Not every village has a school, and not every school has a restroom. No hygiene means a higher risk of diseases that make it impossible for them to study. No education means they do not stand a chance of avoiding poverty and ensuring themselves access to clear water: a vicious circle.





There is no food without water

Not only people need water to live; plants need it, too. If you lack water to quench your thirst, you will not use it to water your garden or irrigate fields. Clear water is indispensable for cooking and preparing food. When you run out of it you go down with digestive system diseases, and your organism is incapable of assimilating nutrients from food.





Water shortage costs money

Even though the water shortage affects the poor the most, it is extremely expensive; you need money to buy water from those who are willing to sell it at outrageous prices. Those who can’t access a well aren’t in a position to hackle. Poor families from Tanzania spent 10 percent of their income on purchasing water. It is even more expensive to buy medicines necessary to treat waterborne diseases. Expenses are accompanied by limited job opportunities because of poor health or lack of time consumed by daily trips to get water, which take up to five hours a day for some people. Five hours they could spend working, studying or resting.


Women’s concern

Women are usually forced to perform the duty of supplying their households with water, and they benefit the most if easier access to water is assured. It happens not only because they no longer need to walk for hours with a 20-litre container on their heads or look after their children ill with diarrhea. Organizations that give assistance in areas affected by water shortages attempt to use empowerment strategies in their everyday work. It means local communities and their members participate actively in bringing projects to fruition. Some roles are obligatorily carried out by women so as to enable them to gain higher social status. Women take part in all the stages of the well building projects; they are involved in the process of logistics decision making, installation planning and well sinking. As a result they acquire decisive influence on the life of their village.



To fight diseases, lack of education, social disproportions, famine, and poverty we need to make sure everyone on the planet has easy access to clear drinking water.







Source: Polish Humanitarian Action

Photos: Adam Rostkowski