Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Cholera outbreak among refugees.


Just looking at this picture makes my heart sick. As the drought in Northern Africa gets worse and Somalian refugees continue to make their way to Dadaab camp in Kenya, which is home to over 400,000, camp conditions are declining as well.

The article I read on the BBC said that the UN has clean water for these people to drink – but flooding of roads and safety issues for workers (2 were abducted last week) is keeping them from getting supplies to all parts of the camp. Already 1 person has died from a cholera outbreak and 60 more people are suffering from the disease.

Sometimes its hard for me to understand why one would resort to drinking this muddy, disease filled water when it is clear that there are clean water resources somewhere close by.

I know that part of the water problem isn’t just water itself, but its also hygiene education. Education about how disease spreads and what diseases are waterborne.

I love that charity: water doesn’t just drill wells and run away. They have a lasting relationship with the towns where wells are dug. They provide hygiene education, sanitation clinics, and hand washing classes. And they’re not just building wells either.

Two years ago, I gave up my birthday for charity: water and the money I raised (along with a bunch of other campaigns) built toilets and a hand washing station for a school in Northern Ethiopia.

The situation in Dadaab camp makes me so sad. So I thought I would tell you about it so you would know. Waterborne diseases are not just a myth. They are real.

Twelve days left on my charity: water campaign. Have you given yet?


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