Water Supply and Women in Developing Countries

This article discusses Water Supply and Women In Developing Countries. Sanitation is discussed separately. Lack of accessible, sufficient, clean and affordable water supply has adverse impacts specifically related to women in developing nations. In most countries women are the primary household members responsible for providing water for domestic consumption.[1] The collection of water is a duty often relegated to women and children, and in many cases this duty may take up to six hours a day to meet the needs of the household. This foregone time often prevents children, especially girls, from attending school, and women from pursuing small business opportunities.[2] The Second World Water Forum in The Hague (2000), concluded that women are the primary users of domestic water, that women used water in their key food production roles, and finally that women and children were the most vulnerable to water-related disasters.[3] At the International Conference on Water and the Environment, the Dublin Statement on Water and Sustainable Development included "Women Play a central part in the provision management and safeguarding of water" as one of 4 principles. Many women's rights and water advocacy organizations have identified water privatization as an area of concern, sometimes alleging negative effects specifically affecting women. Inclusion of Women and the Efficacy of Water Supply Water supply schemes in developing nations have shown higher success when planned and run with full participation of women in the affected communities (please state specif cally where in the document quoted this statement can be found and on which empirical studies it is based).[6] A study including 88 communities in 14 countries showed that projects where men and women from intended user households were included in selection of site facilities, and where water projects were initiated by user households, rather than by external agencies or local leaders, achieved a final higher access to services than those that did not. Sanitation is the hygienic means of promoting health through prevention of human contact with the hazards of wastes. Hazards can be either physical, microbiological, biological or chemical agents of disease. Wastes that can cause health problems include human and animal feces, solid wastes, domestic wastewater (sewage, sullage, greywater), industrial wastes and agricultural wastes. Hygienic means of prevention can be by using engineering solutions (e.g. sewerage and wastewater treatment), simple technologies (e.g. latrines, septic tanks), or even by personal hygiene practices (e.g. simple handwashing with soap). The World Health Organization states that: "Sanitation generally refers to the provision of facilities and services for the safe disposal of human urine and feces. Inadequate sanitation is a major cause of disease world-wide and improving sanitation is known to have a significant beneficial impact on health both in households and across communities. The word 'sanitation' also refers to the maintenance of hygienic conditions, through services such as garbage collection and wastewater disposal.