Utility Week

UTILITY Week 18th December

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UTILITY WEEK | 18TH - 24TH DECEMBER 2015 | 29 Community Charity W e all want to make sure a baby has the best possible start in life. Mums and dads want their children to be born safe and healthy in a clean environ- ment. Grandparents want to see younger generations prosper without the threat of infection and disease. Midwives and hospital staff simply want to be able to do the job that they trained for – to deliver life. But none of this is possible without safe water, toilets or good hygiene. In the UK, we have clean water on tap and a safe place to go to the loo. Wherever you or a loved one gives birth, you know it will be clean and hygienic. But around the world, access to these basic human rights is limited and every minute, a mother loses a newborn baby from infection caused by a lack of safe/ clean water and an unclean environment. Life doesn't have to be this way. WaterAid's work is about changing lives, particularly those most affected by the lack of access to clean water, hygiene and toilets: pregnant women and their newborns. We want to reach 130,000 mums and their fami- lies around the world with clean, safe water. As part of our new strategy we are expand- ing our work into health centres – helping to bring clean water, improved hygiene and proper toilets to clinics around the world. This will enable midwives and doctors to do their work safely; helping to save more lives. How clean water changes lives Charlotte Forrest explains the links between maternal health and access to water and sanitation, and introduces the Deliver Life appeal, which is supported by the UK government. Through our global advocacy work we are also calling on global and national commit- ments to ensure that all healthcare facilities have clean running water and proper toilets; and that good hygiene is included in all rel- evant training. We want to push national governments to ensure that water, sanitation and hygiene services are embedded as a plan for deliver- ing life, so more newborn babies and their mothers survive and thrive. Our ongoing work bringing taps, toilets and hygiene to communities also affects mums and their new babies: safe water close to home takes away the need for arduous walks for – oen dirty – water when preg- nant. It also means safe water close by for mothers and their new babies, and a cleaner environment at home. This winter, WaterAid launched its big- gest ever fundraising appeal, Deliver Life. From 10 November to 10 February, every £1 given by the UK public will be doubled by the UK government, so we can reach twice as many mums and their babies around the world. It means we can give them, their new- borns and their families a brighter start and a better future – simply through clean, safe water, proper toilets and better hygiene. Visit deliverlife.wateraid.org to donate now – and follow the story of Kimoboi hospital. Charlotte Forrest, special projects manager, WaterAid Key points Every minute a newborn baby dies as a result of infection caused by a lack of safe water and an unclean environment. Sepsis accounts for 11 per cent of maternal deaths around the world. 42 per cent of health facilities in Africa have no access to safe water (WHO/UNICEF, 2015). In Tanzania two women die every day in, or immediately aer childbirth, from sepsis. The Deliver Life appeal will help WaterAid deliver clean water to hospitals like Kiomboi in Tanzania Things can change A clean water supply can fight infections that kill 1,600 newborn babies every day. A study in Nepal showed newborn mortal- ity was cut by 41 per cent if their birth atten- dant and mum washed their hands regularly. Last year WaterAid helped more than two million people get access to safe water. WaterAid's Deliver Life appeal aims to reach 130,000 mums and their families around the world with safe water

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