The United Nations doesn’t mince words when it says that water scarcity is one of the world’s biggest challenges. If measurable changes do not happen, two-thirds of the world’s population will live in water-stressed countries by 2025.
I have seen how water scarcity is already a mainstay for families in rural Africa and southeast Asia. Even here in the United States we know that Americans experience water scarcity in places such as Flint, Michigan and California. And lest we forget, we also need to make sure our oceans are free of plastics and pollutants.
Here are five organizations where you can donate this final day of World Water Week.
Continue reading 5 Ways to Help Provide Clean Water During World Water Week
One of the main goals of starting Mom Bloggers for Social Good two years ago was to provide key opportunities for members to travel to see the work of our partners on the ground. For me, seeing the work I write about around the world has been immensely instrumental to learn and become a better advocate for programs that work and share issues that need to be better delved into. Last year three Social Good Moms members saw our partners’ work on the ground: in Delhi, India (Nicole Melancon), Johannesburg, South Africa, and in Indonesia (Stacey Weckstein). Today I am proud to announce the fourth Social Good Mom who will travel on an insight trip.
Jennifer Barbour who writes at Another Jennifer and who is a tireless member of both the Social Good Moms and the Global Team of 200 will travel to Nicaragua with our partner WaterAid to see their water and sanitation programs in one of the poorest countries in the world. The trip will be held March 16 – March 23, 2014 and corresponds with World Water Day which is held annually on March 22. You can follow the trip at #WaterAidNica.
“I am honored to be accompanying WaterAid America on this insight trip to Nicaragua on behalf of Mom Bloggers for Social Good. Having worked with WaterAid America in the past and being a current donor, I look forward to seeing their work on the ground and talking with those who have benefitted from access to safer water and improved sanitation.” – Jennifer Barbour
We are excited to work closely with WaterAid America to spread the word about their Nicaragua programs and are honored that they have chosen one of our members to travel on their very first blogger trip.
“When it comes to beating the global water crisis, the Mom Bloggers for Social Good are a powerful voice for change. We are delighted to team up with them for this, WaterAid’s first blogger insight trip”, commented WaterAid Media & Communications Officer, Alanna Imbach.
“What we see in Nicaragua is a telling example of how smart investments around safe water and toilets can drive entrepreneurship, empower women and improve the health and wellbeing of entire communities. For anyone interested in getting to know the changemakers that are breaking down barriers and creating a future in which clean water and toilets are an accessible reality for everyone in their community, you’re not going to want to miss this trip.”
How to Follow Jennifer’s and WaterAid’s Journey
Read WaterAid’s and Jennifer Barbour’s trip announcements
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
Thank you David Winder, CEO of WaterAid America, for recognizing Mom Bloggers for Social Good in your latest piece for the Huffington Post!
Here in the United States, Millennials and moms alike are making their mark on-line by raising money and awareness about an incredible project to build over 100 toilets and 150 water taps in 31 schools across Madagascar this summer, while students as young as second grade are organizing walks for water that help to fund rainwater collection systems and student-led Hygiene Brigades at schools in Nicaragua.
David Winder: Calling All Young People: The Water Crisis Needs You
Today on World Water Day, together with our partner WaterAidAmerica, we are working with our dedicated community of moms to share through posts how important water is to the livelihood of people worldwide.
You can follow along with us today on our new microsite for World Water Day, worldwater13.tumblr.com, to see all of the posts and videos from Social Good Moms and Global Team of 200 members.
Watch WaterAid’s World Water Day video below and follow the conversation at #worldwaterday. You can also tune into a collaborative Google+ hangout at 1:30 PM EST with WaterAid America Head of Policy and Advocacy, Lisa Schechtman (@LSchecht), People Water co-founder Cody Barker; Water.org International Program Manager, April Davies; charity: water East Africa Water Program Officer Wanja Laiboni; and representatives from Water for People and Whole World.
Photo: Mom Bloggers for Social Good / Jennifer James