20 February 2024

Access to drinking water: a major challenge

posted on : 20 February 2024

The malnutrition of one in two children is linked to water-borne diseases, an unhealthy environment and limited access to drinking water. In 2020, around one in four people in the world did not have access to safe drinking water, i.e. almost 2 billion people. 

More than 80% of the world’s wastewater is returned to the ecosystem without being treated or reused. In most cases, communities do not have the infrastructure they need to treat wastewater.

These waters carry faecal matter, medical waste, agricultural pesticides and potentially toxic chemicals generated by human activities. Entire communities can fall ill if drinking water is contaminated and hygiene is overlooked. By drinking water contaminated by excrement, people risk contracting fatal diseases such as diarrhoea, cholera, dysentery, typhoid and polio. 

Action Against Hunger’s projects are guided by an overriding concern: ensuring access to water, and particularly drinking water. To achieve this aim, we:

  • Transport treated water by tanker in crisis situations to more permanent, uncontaminated water points
  • Purify contaminated water sources so that they can be used without risk to health
  • Install water storage tanks and outdoor tanks
  • Dig new or rehabilitating existing wells and boreholes
  • Carry out canalisation work and preserve the resulting streams
  • Build and repair water networks, mainly in urban areas
  • Install irrigation systems and improve existing ones
  • Build sites specifically intended to provide livestock with access to water

The lack of access to drinking water, sanitation and hygiene, and the consequences on undernourishment, remain major global challenges that we are trying to overcome. In 2022, through our water, sanitation and hygiene programmes, almost 6.8 million people will have benefited from our actions.

To read the full article: Click HERE

To find out about our Water, Hygiene and Sanitation strategy: Click HERE

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