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Clean water is not self-evident

The first thing I do in the
morning is to go to the bathroom, wash my hands, brush my teeth, and then make a coffee or tea. For all of that I need water. It is an
essential resource to start my day comfortably.
I can access water very easibly, but imagine you have to worry about access to clean, drinkable water every morning. In Flora Tristan the only water that is accessible, is contaminated water in various water stations throughout the community. None of the houses have water, so the families to need to walk to these stations to collect water. Contaminated water can cause health problems including Cholera, Hepatitis A, Typhoid Fever and Diarrhoea. The families we work with have to use this contaminated water every day, because authorities are not taking care of improving the quality of the water. That means, that the families need to boil the water every time before they use it for drinking or teeth brushing, in order to kill all the harmful bacteria.

At our school we use water filters that make tab water save to drink. Those filters also ensure that the kids learn the importance of clean
water and how it can affect their life. For HOOP volunteers filtering water, is part of the class preparation. To carry the message of clean water to the whole
community, HOOP´s health classes teach about the dangerous affects of contaminated
water to the mothers as well as their children. Getting such filters though is a big expense that most families could not afford. Their only solution is to boil water which uses up a lot of fuel, so even boiling water is fairly expensive for most families.
HOOP would like to say thank you one more time to the Taiwanese Embassy. Through their generous grant we will be able to continue with medical treatment to the children affected by contaminated water, as well as hygiene classes which will help the children avoiding getting sick in the first case.

Written by Charlette Voss

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