World Water Day 2014: Indonesia still lagging behind on access to safe water
Diarrhoea remains a major cause of death among young children
JAKARTA, 21 March 2014 – Almost one in six people in Indonesia still do not have access to safe drinking water, a key contributing factor high rates of diarrhea and related child deaths.
The percentage of people with access to an improved water source increased from 70 per cent in 1990 to 84 per cent in 2011. However, it is much lower in rural areas (76 per cent) compared to urban areas (93 per cent) and among poor people. The Indonesia Basic Health Survey Riskesdas 2007 reports diarrhoea as the cause of 31 per cent of deaths between the ages of 1 month to a year, and 25 per cent of deaths between the ages of one to four years old.
6th grader Ical, 11(arms crossed) and Rio, 13, washing hands using tip-taps in their school. Fatumnasi Elementary in Fatumnasi village of Soe, NTT participated in the UNICEF WISE project. Teachers and students received hygiene training from the program and are responsible for sharing the information with peers and family.
According to UNICEF and WHO estimates, Indonesia is among a group of 10 countries that are home to almost two-thirds of the global population without access to improved drinking water sources. They are: China (108 million); India (99 million); Nigeria (63 million); Ethiopia (43 million); Indonesia (39 million); Democratic Republic of the Congo (37 million); Bangladesh (26 million); United Republic of Tanzania (22 million); Kenya (16 million) and Pakistan (16 million).
Globally, over three-quarters of a billion people, most of them poor, still do not have access to safe water, despite the fact that the world on average already met the global target for safe drinking water set in the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) four years ago. The MDG target for drinking water was met and passed in 2010, when 89 per cent of the global population had access to improved sources of drinking water — such as piped supplies, boreholes fitted with pumps, and protected wells.
Also in 2010, the UN General Assembly recognized safe drinking water and sanitation as a human right, meaning every person should have access to safe water and basic sanitation. However, this basic right continues to be denied to the poorest people across the world.
Unsafe water, inadequate sanitation and lack of hygiene not only affect the health, safety, and quality of life of children. UNICEF estimates that 1,400 children under five die every day from diarrhoeal diseases linked to lack of safe water and adequate sanitation and hygiene.
“What continues to be striking, and maybe even shocking, is that even in middle income countries there are millions of poor people who do not have safe water to drink,” Wijesekera added. “We must target the marginalized and often forgotten groups: those who are the most difficult to reach, the poorest and the most disadvantaged.”
Students collect clean water in jerrycans from nearby water source to be used in school.
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For further information please contact:
Rita Ann Wallace, UNICEF New York, Tel: 1 212-326-7586, Mobile: 1 917-213-4034, firstname.lastname@example.org
Nuraini Razak , UNICEF Indonesia, Mobile:+628119201654 , email@example.com