More than 780 million people worldwide can’t access clean water. Billions more lack basic sanitation services. Among the underserved, children are most vulnerable to the devastating effects of unsafe drinking water, inadequate sanitation, and poor hygiene. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than 800,000 children younger than five die from the dehydrating effects of diarrhea annually. That means diarrhea kills more than 2,200 children every day. Most of these children live in developing countries.
million people lack access to clean water.
billion people can’t get improved sanitation services.
Many severe yet easily treated diseases are compromising quality of life for millions of world citizens—especially children:
• Neglected tropical diseases (NTDs), including guinea worm disease, Buruli ulcer, and schistosomiasis, are present where safe drinking water, adequate sanitation, and hygiene practices are not.
• Trachoma, the world’s leading cause of preventable blindness, is one tragic result of poor hygiene and sanitation. Villages can attack outbreaks with soap and clean water.
• Cholera outbreaks can occur sporadically in any overcrowded community with inadequate water supplies, sanitation, food safety, and hygiene practices, says the World Health Organization.