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Africa

2012-03-26

AFRICA/RWANDA-Lack of water: every 17 seconds a child dies, more than 40% of the population in sub-Saharan Africa is severly affected.

Gicumbi (Agenzia Fides) – Even today in the whole world 783 million people lack access to clean water, billions of people lack access to sanitation and nearly 2.5 billion do not have latrines. Every 17 seconds a child dies from the consequences of the lack of clean water and, according to data from the Spanish Red Cross, one out of 10 children dies every day around the world for lack of water, sanitation and hygiene. The most common diseases are correlated precisely with this precarious situation and cause the deaths of nearly three million people a year.
Over 40% of the global population severely affected, live in sub-Saharan Africa. In Rwanda, for example, in the district of Gicumbi, the water is accessible only for 37% of the local population, a situation which has led to the spread of diseases like cholera, typhoid and dysentery, which affects mostly women and children . Thanks to the project 'Water, source of life!', Promoted by the Catholic AVSI Foundation, rehabilitation of the aqueduct of Rutare (northern Rwanda) is planned, with the involvement of the population as unskilled labor and the supply of vehicles and technical equipment . The goal is to improve standards of living and access to safe drinking water. More than 10 thousand people will benefit from this intervention, adding also about 10 000 adults and 4 000 students who will participate directly in the activities of health and hygiene promotion and awareness on the use of water, in addition to the approximately 20 people that will be trained to manage the water system (finance, marketing and rates).
In this context the intervention on behalf of AVSI and the Movement for the Struggle Against World Hunger, funded by the European Commission, which consists of 4 integrated phases: construction of basic infrastructure for water supply and sanitation and health care (through the rehabilitation of an aqueduct of 37.2 km in the Rutare, Giti, Rwamiko Muko areas for the supply of water to 13,674 inhabitants), hygiene promotion for the most vulnerable and needy residents of rural areas (through the construction of toilets in schools and awareness), improvements in the health sector, capacity building of key points of the project (the workders of the aqueduct follow a course to increase the skills necessary for the proper maintenance of the infrastructure). (AP) (Agenzia Fides 26/3/2012)

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