To ensure the health and well-being of all people: first, we must look to protect the most primary and necessary resources that all life relies on. Clean, safe, drinkable Water is one of the essential elements of keeping people in their communities healthy. Water supports food sources, proper sanitation in homes and neighborhoods, and prevents the spread of Waterborne diseases, destroying entire communities.
Ensuring the health and well-being of all people includes the commitment to end epidemics that take the livelihoods of millions of people. HIV and AIDS, Tuberculosis, Malaria, and other diseases, could be eradicated by 2030, beginning with Water reform and accessibility.
Included in fighting for the health and well-being of all people is the right to universal health coverage and access to safe medications, vaccines, and health care. Water plays such an essential role in the daily health and wellness of societies, communities, families, and individuals. There have been great strides made in the right direction; reducing disease, death rates and increasing accessible health care. While this progress is significant, there is still a long journey ahead. This does not include communities that have continued to be marginalized and excluded, like in sub-Saharan Africa, where 22 million people live with HIV, with no access to medication or therapies. 33,000 deaths occur every week, 90% of them being under five years of age, due to unsafe Water and unhygienic living conditions (Ohio University, 2021). Additionally, Water in the world’s 276 transboundary river basins being polluted and untreated has set the stage for conflicts over access to clean Water (Ohio University, 2021).
Access to clean Water not only prevents the spread of disease but allows people to have a cleaner, more sanitary environment, where disease is less likely to spread by unhygienic conditions (World Vision, 2021). Access to clean Water improves individual and community well-being by also reducing the time needed to gather Water. This time can then be better spent on other aspects of life, like pursuing education, growing crops, and working, further contributing to accelerating impoverished communities and igniting economic growth.
While significant strides have been made in the quality of life in many communities, there is still a long road ahead to achieve health and well-being for all. Acknowledging the interdependence of Water and the further development of universal health and well-being is the first step towards ending injustices across the world. Water& aims to identify this as a time to turn towards achieving universal Water accessibility and Water sanitation for the benefit of all humanity.
“10 Ways Access to Clean Water Can Improve the World.” Ohio University, March 2, 2021. https://onlinemasters.ohio.edu/blog/access-to-clean-water/.
“Clean Water and Sanitation: the Keys to Breaking Free from Poverty.” Clean Water and Sanitation - The Keys To Breaking Free From Poverty | World Vision Australia. Accessed November 1, 2021. https://www.worldvision.com.au/global-issues/work-we-do/climate-change/clean-water-sanitation.
“Goal 3: Good Health and Well-Being.” Goal 3: Good health and well-being | Joint SDG Fund. Accessed November 1, 2021. https://www.jointsdgfund.org/sustainable-development-goals/goal-3-good-health-and-well-being.
Media, Healing Waters. “Why Do Communities Need Clean Water?” Healing Waters. Healing Waters, February 4, 2021. https://healingwaters.org/why-do-communities-need-clean-water/.