Most of us don’t think twice about heading into the shower in the morning before work. We turn on the water and expect an abundance of clean water to rain down from the showerhead, nearly twenty gallons of it on average. Then we still have plenty of water left to flush the toilet, cook breakfast, and make a cup of coffee before we head out of the door.
Now imagine having absolutely no water in your home. You wake your children up very early, pack them up, and begin a round trip journey six hours long or further to collect forty gallons of dirty water — heavy, contaminated water that you have to carry back home to use.
After all that, you can start your workday.
According to the World Health Organization (WHO), there are 2.2 billion people worldwide who don’t have access to safe water. Easily operated and affordable water treatment systems in 3rd world countries can change these dismal statistics.
To begin understanding 3rd world water treatment, we must answer specific questions. Is accessibility to clean and safe water a human right for everyone? Is there still a water crisis in the world? Is there is a need for water treatment? And, if so, who is responsible for helping?
What Is Safe and Accessible Water?
Safe water does not harm you if you come in contact with it. The United Nations (U.N.) defines safe water as water free from micro-organisms, chemical substances, and radiological hazards that constitute a threat to a person’s health.
Accessible water comes from an improved water source and can be accessed within a time frame of less than a thirty-minute round trip.
We are so accustomed to safe and accessible water that we usually don’t stop to consider what life would be like without it or that others don’t have it.
Is Water a Human Right?
Some argue that people get used to drinking contaminated water or are accustomed to the exercise required to retrieve it. These are not valid arguments because safe water is not a luxury; it is essential to life and should be accessible to everyone no matter who they are or where they live.
In 2010, the United Nations General Assembly voted to recognize the right to safe and clean drinking water as a human right. They agreed it is the right of every human being to have:
- Between 50 and 100 liters of water per person per day so there is enough for personal and domestic use
- Water that is safe, acceptable, and affordable
- Water cost that does not exceed three percent of household income
- A water source that is within 1000 meters of the home
- Collection time to the water source should not be longer than 30 minutes
As good as this sounds, it’s important to note that the U.N. allows the “progressive realization” of human rights. This means countries only need to do their best with the resources they have available to provide water. That caveat leaves a critical gap.
None of this changes the truth that morally, access to clean water is a human right.
What Water Crisis?
A crisis can be defined as a situation that “leads to an unstable and dangerous situation affecting an individual, group, community, or whole society.”
One-third of the world’s population lacks access to safe water. That is also a crisis. Once we acknowledge there is a water crisis, what can be done? A practical solution is water treatment.
The Need for 3rd World Water Treatment
To address the water crisis, we need to examine how to implement 3rd world water treatment. To begin, we must consider the individual needs of each community since each is unique. One size doesn’t fit all.
It’s crucial that enough water can be purified in a short amount of time to serve an entire community.
Quality 3rd world water treatment systems include features such as:
- Customizability to the community
- Sturdy construction
- Easily operated
- Low maintenance
- High efficiency for large amounts of clean water in a short time
- Ability to operate with various power sources such as wind, solar, battery, and generator when electricity isn’t available
Who Is Responsible for Helping?
Another common argument is that we need to only focus on helping United States citizens. Have you heard the statement, “Charity begins at home?” First, water filtration and investing in communities is not charity. Second, although there is value in the concept that we can’t help others from our own “empty tank,” that doesn’t mean we can close our eyes to the suffering around the world. We’re responsible for the information we learn. We are also responsible for helping — even if the help is needed outside our country’s boundaries.
In Matthew 25:40, Jesus says, “Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.”
Compassion doesn’t stop at our borders. And it’s more than a feeling; it’s an action. At Healing Waters International, we are stirred to compassionate action. We’re not only interested in providing safe and accessible water to at-risk communities worldwide, but we’re committed to investing in the people of those communities, so they are transformed physically, socially, economically, and spiritually. We do this by implementing four-steps that include:
- Investing in people with training programs
- Implementing safe water solutions and health & hygiene education
- Engaging communities for long-term success
- Instilling hope
Our holistic approach empowers the people within the communities we serve to flourish.
We hope this information has helped to increase your understanding of 3rd world water treatment. If what you have read here resonates with your compassion, we invite you to contact us today to discover how you can partner with us. Join Healing Waters International in our mission to end the global water crisis and change lives.
We’re on a mission to end the global water crisis. We build holistic clean water solutions and spread God’s love in at-risk communities around the world, empowering people not just to survive, but to thrive – physically, socially and spiritually.