Over the course of the next month or so we will be working with major NGOs to spread the word about new reports and critical days commemorating important causes and issues. Mark your calendars for these causes.
Tuesday, February 25
- We will be working with Save the Children to spread the word about its brand-new newborn health report during a 24-hour carnival.
- #TeacherTuesday launches with UNESCO on this day. We are joining nine other global voices to share inspirational teachers around the world for ten weeks. Read more.
- #TeacherTuesday Twitter chat with the first featured teacher will take place at 12 PM GMT. Join with the #TeacherTuesday hashtag.
Thursday, February 27 from 12:00 – 1:30 PM EST
- Investing in Women and Girls: Finding solutions in water, sanitation and hygiene, featuring H&M Conscious Foundation and Procter & Gamble. WaterAid will be standing by, too, to answer any questions that people might have about the work that we are gearing up to do together. RSVP by February 25 at https://www3.gotomeeting.com/register/487286806
Friday, February 28
- This day marks the last day to comment on the Every Newborn Action Plan. Add your comments by this Friday.
Friday, March 7 from 2 – 3 PM EST
Saturday, March 22
- We will be partnering with WaterAid America on a big day of World Water Day online discussions. Stay tuned for more as the day approaches.
Yesterday World Toilet Day was recognized to bring global awareness about the millions of people worldwide who do not have access to a toilet. In fact, 40% of the world’s population has to use the bathroom in the open and spends billions of hours searching for a place to relieve themselves.
WaterAid, along with the Water Supply and Sanitation Collaborative Council recently published a new report, We can’t wait, that shows the effects of low sanitation and hygiene on women and girls. According to the report women and girls are exposed to harrasement, shame, disease, and attacks when they need to use the bathroom. That is what I also heard from a visit to communal toilets (photos below) in New Delhi and Johannesburg. For women and girls going to the bathroom is a harrowing experience.
“One in three [people] lack access to adequate sanitation,” noted UN Deputy-Secretary General, Jan Eliasson and Unilever Chief Executive Officer, Paul Polman in the report. “The result is widespread death and disease and social marginalization. Poor sanitation exposes women and girls to the risk of assault and, when schools cannot provide clean, safe toilets, girls’ attendance drops.”
Communal Toilet in a Slum in New Delhi
Communal Toilets in Alexandra Township, Johannesburg, South Africa
I know it’s a little too early to crown a NGO video the best of the year, but this one from Water is Life will be hard to top.
Water is Life created a short film that shows a four-year-old Kenyan boy fulfilling a bucket list from staying at a hotel to flying in an airplane to seeing the beach for the first time. No child should have a bucket list at the age of four. This film put the problem of under 5 child mortality in the world’s face by using the voice of a small child to drive awareness. It’s absurd for a four-year-old child to have a bucket life just as the rate of under five child mortality from bad water and preventable causes is equally as absurd. The video is brilliantly done, which is very hard to do.