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The issue explained

A lack of safe water and toilets can be deadly for children. Babies and young kids are most vulnerable to the diseases that result from dirty water and poor sanitation. In developing countries, each child has an average of ten attacks of diarrhoea before the age of five. 315,000 children under-five die every year from diarrhoeal diseases caused by dirty water and poor sanitation – one every two minutes.

The daily task of collecting water dominates the lives of many children, especially girls. The weight of the water container can cause damage to their head, neck and spine, causing health problems later in life.

Having to walk long distances to collect water, and then stand in line for their turn, leaves children with little or no time to go to school, and they often miss out on their education entirely.

Girls that do attend school often drop out when they begin menstruating, due to the lack of decent toilets where they can change their cloths and stay clean. Around 60% of the children currently not enrolled in school worldwide are girls.

As part of our mission to reach everyone everywhere, we consider the needs of children as well as adults when improving safe water and sanitation services. We make sure water points and toilets are accessible to kids and improve facilities in schools so children can continue with their studies.

Children are quick to learn and can be effective ambassadors for good hygiene within their families and communities. We promote good hygiene through child-friendly activities such as puppet shows and plays, games and songs, and we help set up school hygiene clubs.

Providing children with clean and accessible water and toilets changes their lives. Their health improves, they have more time to go to school, and they get back the freedom to just be kids.