It is happening again. In Ukraine, war once again shows the worst side of the human condition, the failure of a civilization that claims global humanitarian achievements. We have started two projects there to help the victims of another episode of human insanity. Solidarity is the hope of those who suffer and all humanity that suffers with them. to bring water to the victims.
No path to sustainability is possible if women are not the focus of any actions. The Agenda 2030 will not be achieved without the participation of each and every woman in the world free from the injustices that oppress them. The access to water and sanitation reveals some of the most excruciating inequalities, which are often little known. We know that much remains to be done, but the path is becoming clearer: with them and for them. Here are some of the facts as of today.
The climate crisis is drying up many sources and forcing many to move in search of water. More than 110 million people worldwide use water directly from rivers, streams, ponds, or lakes, and four million die every year from drinking inadequate water. Droughts threaten to increase this figure. The drama of this scourge in Nigeria is described in the short film Hope is not enough, finalist at the We Art Water Film Festival 5.
The climate crisis is creating severe problems in Cameroon. Desertification and floods generate thousands of displaced people every year who end up in cities unable to provide drinking water for all. The short film Mami Wata, a micro-documentary finalist at the We Art Water Film Festival 5, provides a testimony of the vulnerability of millions of Cameroonians who survive in one of the most water-deficient African countries.
The terms describing hygiene facilities are simpler than those for access to water and sanitation; they refer to the existence or lack of handwashing facilities and the availability of clean water and soap. Covid-19 has increased the value of these practices, which are fundamental to human health and dignity, and inaccessible to more than 2.27 billion people.
“Drylands” occupy approximately 41% of the Earth’s land surface and are home to more than 2.5 billion people. They are the most water-stressed areas globally and contain essential biodiversity for mitigating and adapting to climate change. These territories are the key to curbing desertification and ensuring the maintenance of 50% of livestock and 44% of the world’s food. Understanding the relationship between aridity and water is the first step to achieving it.
We are collaborating to bring water and create a vegetable garden for 1,000 schoolchildren whose families struggle with drought and famine in one of the most impoverished areas of Zimbabwe. These schoolchildren will be adults in 2030. The attainment of the SDGs depends on education and knowledge reaching them all. For this, they need water and knowledge.
Health systems in rural African regions suffer water, sanitation, and hygiene shortcomings. In the Senegalese Sahel, we collaborate in a project to help healthcare centers where Covid-19 has been added to diseases caused by poor water, chronic malnutrition, and the lack of medical assistance. As in the rest of the world, if we attain SDG 6, we will achieve SDG 3: guaranteeing healthy lives and promoting well-being for all ages.
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