Clean water is the wellspring of children’s future

UNICEF, the UN’s organisation for the rights and emergency relief of children, has published shocking facts to draw attention to the severe impact of lack of access to clean, safe drinking water on children. It is increasingly accepted that the effects of climate change are first felt through the world’s waters in the form of droughts, floods and heavy storms. When these disasters hit, they can wipe out entire water supplies or leave them contaminated, risking the lives of millions of children.

Our everyday hidden water consumption

Day after day, we use tremendous amounts of water, not only for drinking, washing and cooking, but also for producing our food, even though we are often unaware of those quantities. The water footprint is an important measure that shows how much the production of the foods, products and processes that are required for our lives consume of that indispensable resource. Let’s look at some thought-provoking data.

“WASH in School” water and hygiene project – Hungarian help in Tanzania

The “WASH in School” water and hygiene development project of the Hungarian Charity Service of the Order of Malta (HCSOM) serves to support the objectives of the National Health Policy launched by the Tanzanian Ministry of Health. The Service started its capacity extension and complex hygiene program in 2014 in a heavily disadvantaged elementary school in Dar es Salaam, the capital of Tanzania, and completed it by August 2015. The development was the fourth mission of the HCSOM in East Africa, and as a result, some two thousand young people in elementary education have received access to legal and clean drinking water as well as the basic sanitary services that are essential for their health.

The Hungarian Academy of Sciences is launching a comprehensive hydrology programme

The Hungarian Academy of Sciences (HAS) decided to establish a National Hydrology Research Programme at the end of June. The programme focuses equally on the research required for understanding phenomena related to water and the water cycle as well as the research, development and innovation activities associated with operative tasks.

Assistance with autonomous food production: a water supply system in Northern Ethiopia

Hungary’s excellent water management know-how and practical experience were the foundation for the water management and irrigation programme implemented between 2007 and 2012 in the Kobo Girana Valley of Ethiopia’s Amhara region by VIKUV Water Prospecting and Drilling Ltd.

Unprecedented rains and flooding in Louisiana

This August, the most severe flood in its history hit Louisiana, one of the southern states of the United States. In some parts of the state, record rainfalls of 18-25 cm fell in a very short time, destroying over forty thousand homes. The emergency, declared on the third day of very heavy rains, was expected to get worse as further rain and storms were predicted for the region. The Washington Post noted that the “no-name storm” dumped three times as much rain on Louisiana as Hurricane Katrina.

The American National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration has developed a water management decision support system

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), which researches the oceans and the atmosphere, and its professional partners have developed a comprehensive data collection and prediction model which may bring a breakthrough in the prediction of floods and hence flood defence as well. The special feature of the system is that at the national level, it registers data collected by over 8000 measuring instruments, and produces analysis and hourly forecasts for 2.7 million locations distributed on all the rivers of the United States. That is a tremendous step forward relative to the previous system, which only produced forecasts updated once every several hours, and only for 4000 locations.

Improving hygiene conditions in Kenya using solar cells

The mission of the Taita Foundation is to provide material and moral assistance to families living on the periphery of Kenyan society and children living in orphanages. They send volunteers to assist with appropriate healthcare for the children they support, to provide education to disadvantaged families and to prepare them for the labour market in order to improve their conditions of life. In addition, the Foundation also makes a special point of promoting African culture and people in Hungary, creating links between Hungarian and African schools and supporting existing relationships.

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