A school child drinking water from the tap

5 Ways to improve water quality and access to water

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There are about 2.2 billion people around the globe that still have no access to clean water for drinking. More than 50% of the global population still lack access to safe sanitation, with three billion having no access to handwashing facilities with soap and 673 million people practicing open defecation. Water quality and safety are essential for human well-being and development.  Access to clean water, sanitation and hygiene will enable people to lead healthier and more productive lives.

One of the most productive elements in reducing poverty and promoting health is providing the access to safe water. WHO; the international authority on public health and water quality steers global efforts meant to prevent transmission of waterborne diseases. By promoting health-based provisions to governments and working hand in hand with partners to enhance risk management systems that are effective to communities, water suppliers, and households, this goal can be achieved. Other effective ways to improve water quality and access to water are:

  • Sanitation Facilities

Upgrading sanitation facilities by providing latrines and toilets that flush into a safe enclosure or a sewer in places where people practice open defecation will greatly improve sanitation, hence the quality of drinking water.

  • Education & Sensitization

Encouraging better hygiene habits through education and sensitization is significant. For instance, proper handwashing with soap and water can reduce diarrhoea, which kills over 700 children under age 5 every day, among other illness cases by up to 35 percent.

  • Rainwater Harvesting Systems

Implementing rainwater harvesting systems to collect and store rainwater for drinking, as well as building or constructing wells to extract groundwater from underground aquifers.

  • Water-treatment Capability

Providing home water-treatment capability through the use of filters, solar disinfection, among other methods to make drinking water safe.

  • Low-cost Solutions

Promoting solutions that are low-cost; such as plastic bottles or chlorine tablets which can be exposed to sunlight, so as to improve the quality of water.

These and more ways are explained further and in detail in our Water, Hygiene and Sanitation (WASH) program that will not only equip you with knowledge on safe access to quality water but also help you kick start your WASH career. This will play a critical role in impacting the world towards achieving health and sustainability.


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