An email from Tear Fund has just advised me that 22 March (Monday week) is World Water Day.
Samaritan's Purse, another organisation I support, considers safe drinking water such a vital need that they have a project site dedicated to it: Turn on the Tap.
You can take photos of taps around your home and email them in. A corporate sponsor donates $2 when you do! It makes a huge difference. For $100 Samaritan's Purse can give a family a water filter. $250 provides a community (yes, a whole community) with a well and pump.
According to Turn on the Tap, a child dies every 20 seconds from water-related diseases. Unsafe drinking water is the second greatest killer of children in the world today. Yes, you did read that correctly.
UNSAFE DRINKING WATER KILLS a child every 20 seconds.
The second greatest killer in the world is completely preventable.
It's hard to believe that something so basic could be such a threat to someone's welfare. I mean, we just 'turn on the tap' right? I remember my brother getting giardia on a camping trip once - that was pretty awful. I can't imagine what it must be like to live with that kind of illness every day.
One in 8 people in the world do not have access to save drinking water (that's over 800million).
Most people in the developing world would love to have 10 litres of safe water a day. We probably flush that down our toilet with every single flush.
Flooding in on our street in Townsville, North QLD...just an inconvenience for us, as we don't rely on this water for drinking!
So, it seems to me that there is a little inequality here and that this is an issue I can, and should, be doing something about. I don't have to save the world. I can start by being aware of just how precious fresh, clean, filtered water is. Then remember to be grateful that it arrives at my house in a pipe, saving me hours of walking and carrying to fetch it. Sheesh, a nice hot water cylinder even heats it up for me.
I can decide to take my gratitude and position of privilege and do something with it.
What, I am still trying to decide. I do have a week, after all...hmmm.
Do you ever think about how much water we use, and how easy it is to take it for granted? Is there something you can do to help those who don't have the same access we do? Maybe you could send a photo of your tap into Turn on the Tap?