|© UNICEF Bangladesh/2008/Naser Siddique|
|350 families use this pond sand filter for drinking and cooking water in Pirojpur, Barisal division.|
UNICEF’s safe water interventions, including arsenic mitigation, are integrated with the sanitation and hygiene programmes.
Community hygiene promoters (CHPs) educate local communities about the importance of drinking safe water and using clean water for cooking. They explain that water must be collected and stored in clean, covered containers before use.
The hygiene promoters also assist the community to mark safe water sources on village and slum maps and develop plans for future improvements. Between 2006 and 2010, UNICEF and the Government will install more than 20,000 new safe water points according to community plans. Over 13,000 water points had been installed by the project by the end of 2010.
Arsenic testing and removal
UNICEF has been involved in arsenic testing of tube wells in the 19 project districts. Safe wells are painted green and contaminated wells are painted red. UNICEF has tested more than 1 million tube wells for arsenic contamination and is providing alternate safe water – including household arsenic filters and community treatment plants – in 68 sub-districts.
Preparing for floods
UNICEF works to support the Department of Public Health Engineering of the Government of Bangladesh, providing technical expertise to help prepare for annual flooding, which contaminates water sources and destroys latrines.