World Water Day – 22nd March 2012


According to IFRC/RC, global figures and facts based on 2012 WHO Update Report, released 6 March 2012:

  • Today there are still 780 million people without access to a safe water supply.
  • Over 3 million people are infected with cholera every year causing over 100,000 deaths – ten times more than previous estimates – and over 1.4 Billion people are at risk.
  • Those who have no access to basic sanitation is 2.5 billion, mostly in Sub-Saharan Africa and Asia/Pacific.
  • 71% of households in Sub-Saharan Africa rely on women and girls to collect water, which often prevents them from working or attending school.
  • Over 8000 children die every day due to water, sanitation and hygiene related diseases - one every ten seconds.
  • Poor water supply, sanitation and hygiene are major contributors of morbidity worldwide, especially in young children, of whom over 3 million die each year.

Significant role in providing access to water, sanitation and hygiene promotion to those acutely affected by disasters and crises have International Federation of Red Cross/ Red Crescent, serving on average over 2 million people each year. This is possible through trained experts, specialized training that can be mobilized at short notice anywhere in the world.
In parallel, at a country level the Societies of the Red Cross/ Red Crescent also have a key role in restoration, maintenance and development of sanitation in regions affected by disasters, working through a network of trained staff, volunteers and local branches and as auxiliary to Government.
To meet the global challenges, related to the lack of water and water equipment the RCRC through the Global Water and Sanitation Initiative (GWSI) is further scaling up the efforts of the organization worldwide in providing sustainable access to water, sanitation and improved hygiene of the population in 64 countries. The purpose of the RCRC is to reach 15 million people by 2015. In areas where the population needs for water and sanitation are greater, the RCRC is committed to continue operating after 2015 as part of long-term commitment of the organization to resolve the problem of global importance.