Water For Life


Water consumption varies greatly among regions due to differences in economic development. The average municipal use in the United States is about 150 gal (568 l) per person per day, though the rate can be higher than 350 gal (1324 l) in some locations. This includes home use for bathing, waste disposal, and gardening, as well as institutional and commercial usage. Per capita (per person) water usage in Asia is only 85 l per day, and just 12 gal or 47 l in Africa. In Singapore, per capital (per person) water usage in 2006 was 158 l per day.

According to the World Health Organization (WHO) of the United Nations, people have a minimum water requirement of about 20 l per person per day. This is the minimum amount needed for physiological rehydration, cooking, washing and other subsistence requirements. However, the WHO estimates that nearly two billion people consume contaminated water. This carries a significant risk of developing such water-borne diseases as cholera, dysentery, polio or typhoid, which kill about 25 million people per year. Both conservation and sanitation are obvious necessities in meeting the huge demand for freshwater.

According to UNICEF, 70% or 9.7 millions of Cambodian inhabitants do not have access to clean, uncontaminated drinking water. Measuring by any standard, water in Cambodia is contaminated and undrinkable without proper treatments. This is typically true in the rural areas where people drink water from rice paddies, ponds, and shallow wells (surface water). This surface water is contaminated with chemicals in fertilizers, insecticides, animal feces, and human waste. The lack of clean drinking water contributes to health problems.

Many NGOs including Rotary International have invested in Cambodia to bring clean water to the population. They have dug water wells, introduced pumps, built tanks and filtration plant as well as harvested rainwater. All these wonderful efforts have brought relief for many impoverished communities in Cambodia but despite such, there are still many remote villages that are living without adequate access to water especially the children.

In Cambodia, 1 in 7 children die before the age of five from preventable diseases such as typhoid, malnutrition, malaria, dengue. The common denominator in many of these is waterborne illness. Often when a child gets sick, the parents will self administer local traditional medicine due to poverty and distance to the clinic. Even if they make it to the health clinic, it is often out of proper medicine. By the time the desperate parents bring the child to the hospital in the city, it is already too late to save the child's life. Thus it is most relevant and vital that villagers must have accessible to clean water to prevent child mortality.

Water for Life

Plan – Pond

Cross Section - Pond

Water Assessment Report

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