Human Concern International striving to make Clean Water a Global Reality,By Radia Ali, HCI Toronto
Millions of people across the world die due to lack of safe water. “Every day, 700 children die due to lack of clean drinking water” (UNICEF, 2018). Over the past forty years, Human Concern International has been committed to providing clean drinking water and building structures for safe water for impoverished communities around the world. Starting from building irrigation systems in Afghanistan, digging tube wells in Bangladesh to building deep water wells in Somalia, HCI strove towards ensuring remote areas get access to clean and safe water.
Who is HCI?
Human Concern International (HCI) is the first Muslim Charity in Canada with operations in 40 countries, and has delivered over $200 million of aid to date. Founded in 1979, Human Concern International (HCI) has a mission to end global poverty and save human lives. HCI runs sustainable development programs, seasonal projects and emergency relief projects in countries across Africa, Asia, and the Middle East.
Fast Facts on HCI Water Projects
Human Concern International has built water systems, water wells, and latrines around the world.
- In Afghanistan alone, HCI has built 129 water wells, 86 Springs, 31 water reservoirs
- HCI has invested in 22 water wells in remote villages of Somalia
- In Lebanon, HCI has built artesian wells, water reservoirs, and and water pipelines in Lebanon
In addition to these projects, HCI has provided access to clean and safe water in many other countries, including Bangladesh, Ethiopia, Eritrea, India, Kenya, Philippines, Pakistan, and Sudan.
The global problem
Currently, dirty water poses as a great risk to people all around the world. With natural disasters such as, flood and hurricanes, political conflict that gives rise to mass internal displacement and poverty as a constant issue, safe water is an essential need that is lacking. As stated by World Health Organisation, 785 million people lack even a basic drinking-water service, including 144 million people who are dependent on surface water (2019). This means people who do have access to water can still suffer from diseases from unsafe water.
The present problem
“Every day, 700 children die from diseases caused by unsafe water or inadequate sanitation.”- UNICEF
With environmental issues giving rise to natural disasters, wars and political inequity, global poverty remains as one of the most pressing issues. Children are the most vulnerable population. Current statistics show their death toll in hundreds every single day.
The future problem
“By 2040, 1 in 4 children — 600 million children — will live in areas of extremely high water stress. The poorest, most disadvantaged children will suffer the most.” – UNICEF
Although many organisations are working towards making safe water a global reality, projected statistics show that millions of children will suffer from unsafe or lack of water.
HCI’s Past water campaigns
HCI has been at the forefront of addressing many emergencies related to water around the world. In the year 2017, HCI was active in providing Emergency Drought Relief in Mogadishu, Somalia, while working in close collaboration with local NGOs.
Sanitary & Hygiene
In 2004, HCI partnered with UNICEF and built deep tube wells for nine schools and provided 61 toilets in ten school in Kunar Khas, Afghanistan. The first project included the construction of 23 wells and 69 latrines as well as a basic hygiene education and awareness program in Khas, Kunar District. More than 3200 people benefited from this project. The second project involved the construction of 60 latrines and nine deep wells. Six latrines were constructed in each of the ten schools in the district of Sarkano in Kunar province which benefitted 10000 children
HCI built a water Reservoir in Taran village, EL-Donnieh. 4000 inhabitants were receiving clean water. HCI completed a power generator project in Al-Batroun, Lebanon. The project was to install a 106 K.V.A power generator and provide clean water supply to Ras Nahash by constructing a 260-meter-deep artesian well complete with water reservoir and pipeline.
2019 Clean Water Campaign at a glance
This year HCI has set projects in motion to solve water crisis in different regions around the world. HCI’s campaign, Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) Campaign is designed to facilitate access to safe and affordable drinking water and promote high standards of sanitation and hygiene among all. HCI does this by building water wells and distributing sanitation and hygiene kits in rural areas.
Solving the Water Crisis in India
HCI is aiming to address the water crisis in Bihar and West Bengal, India. HCI will construct 20 tube wells which will provide 20 families with access to clean and safe water.
Solving the Water Crisis in Pakistan
This project is addressing the water crisis affecting the population in Tharparkar, Sindh, and in the Burmese Colony in Karachi (the residences of this colony are Rohingya Muslim, who are very poor and living in unhygienic conditions). HCI will construct 7 wells in Tharparkar, and 6 in the Burmese Colony to provide access to clean and safe water for the families living in those areas.
HCI Field Visit all the way to Kenya
This year, HCI Director of Programs made a visit to the water well project in the Tana River County in Kenya. Human concern International built four water wells this year in the villages Madhingini, Ziwani, Bulla Nyuki, and Bakkuyu to help communities in these villages get access to clean drinking water. The communities can now access clean drinking water readily that otherwise, would have taken them a painstaking number of hours, in walking 2-3 KM daily just to get clean water