Category Archives: strength

Ethiopia: World’s Poorest Have Least Access to Safe Water – UNICEF

Ethiopia: World’s Poorest Have Least Access to Safe Water – UNICEF

Almost four years after the world met the global target set in the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) for safe drinking water, and after the UN General Assembly declared that water was a human right, over three-quarters of a billion people, most of them poor, still do not have this basic necessity, UNICEF said to commemorate World Water Day.

Estimates from UNICEF and WHO published in 2013 are that a staggering 768 millionpeople do not have access to safe drinking water, causing hundreds of thousands of children to sicken and die each year. Most of the people without access are poor and live in remote rural areas or urban slums. UNICEF estimates that 1,400 children under five die every day from diarrheal diseases linked to lack of safe water and adequate sanitation and hygiene.

“Every child, rich or poor, has the right to survive, the right to health, the right to a future,” said Sanjay Wijesekera, head of UNICEF’s global water, sanitation and hygiene program. “The world should not rest until every single man, woman and child has the water and sanitation that is theirs as a human right.”

The MDG target for drinking water was met and passed in 2010, when 89 per cent of the global population had access to improved sources of drinking water — such as piped supplies, boreholes fitted with pumps, and protected wells. Also in 2010, the UN General Assembly recognized safe drinking water and sanitation as a human right, meaning every person should have access to safe water and basic sanitation. However, this basic right continues to be denied to the poorest people across the world.

“What continues to be striking, and maybe even shocking, is that even in middle income countries there are millions of poor people who do not have safe water to drink,” Wijesekera added. “We must target the marginalized and often forgotten groups: those who are the most difficult to reach, the poorest and the most disadvantaged.”

According to UNICEF and WHO estimates, 10countries are home to almost two-thirds of the global population without access to improved drinking water sources. They are: China (108 million); India (99 million); Nigeria (63 million); Ethiopia (43 million); Indonesia (39 million); Democratic Republic of the Congo (37 million); Bangladesh (26 million); United Republic of Tanzania (22 million); Kenya (16 million) and Pakistan (16 million).

Ethiopia is on track to achieve the Millennium Development Goal target related to water-62 per cent of the population should access improved sources of drinking water by 2015 against the MDG target of 57 per cent. More than half of the households (54 per cent) have access to an improved source of drinking water, compared to 35 per cent in 2005 and 25 per cent only in 2000 (EDHS 2011).

However, the country is lagging behind on sanitation targets. While the MDG target for access to improved sanitation facilities is 51 per cent, only 8.3 per cent (EDHS 2011) of the population has access to improved sanitation. Children in school are especially vulnerable as the National Water Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) Inventory data shows that only 33 per cent of school have improved sanitation facilities for students and teachers, and only 31 per cent have access to water.

“While the theme this year is the inter-linkage between water and energy, we should focus on women and children as the primary beneficiaries of water in Ethiopia,” said Samuel Godfrey, Chief of WASH in UNICEF Ethiopia.

Huge disparities in the quality of water and sanitation infrastructure lie between the urban and rural area. In most rural areas across Ethiopia, water scarcity, inferior water quality, lack of sanitation facilities and inappropriate hygiene behaviors threaten the well-being of communities. There is also an urgent need to address the issue of separate sanitary facilities. Girls are often reluctant to use facilities, even if they are clean, because toilet blocks and hand washing facilities (important for menstrual hygiene) rarely provide the level of privacy and security they require.

“It is vital that girls should not feel marginalized and lose their self-respect due to lack of WASH facilities in schools. We need to foster an environment where girls maintain their dignity and focus on their school attendance and achievements,” stresses Mr. Godfrey.

In order to harmonize the WASH efforts in the country, the ONEWASH program has been launched in 2013, bringing together four ministries: Water Resources; Health; Education; and Finance & Economic Development. ONEWASH attempts to modernize the way water and sanitation services are delivered; improving the health situation, decreasing the drop-out rates of children in schools, and making financing for Water Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) more effective. Above all, the program contributes significantly in meeting both the Growth and Transformation Plan (GTP) and the Millennium Development Goals (MDG) targets.

This week, UNICEF launched a global social media campaign to demand action for the 768 million people without access to safe water. Followers on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram will be asked to discuss what water means to them through the use of photography and the hashtag #WaterIs to help raise awareness of what it means to live without access to safe drinking water.

Recognizing all those who give selflessly, and remembering guidance from Mother Teresa

MotherTeresa 1

Below is the writing of Mother Teresa, in memory of her work caring for those most in need:

ANYWAY

People are unreasonable, illogical and self-centered.
Love them anyway!
If you do good, people will accuse you
of selfish, ulterior motives.
Do good anyway!
If you are successful, you will win
false friends and enemies.
Succeed anyway!
The good you do will be forgotten tomorrow.
Do good anyway!
Honesty and frankness make you vulnerable.
Be honest and frank anyway!
What you spend years building may be
destroyed overnight.
Build anyway!
People really need help
but may attack you if you help them.
Help them anyway!
Give the world the best you have
and you’ll get kicked in the teeth.
Give the world the best you’ve got anyway!

Written by: Mother Teresa

Flying Santa – Right Action

Capt. William H. Wincapaw, known as an adventurous and skilled Airman, unknowingly began a tradition in 1929. He was just a guy that wanted to bring holiday cheer to the lighthouse keepers along the East Coast by dropping packages of toys, coffee, shaving supplies, and snacks around Christmas time. He soon became known by the light keepers as the Flying Santa. Over the decades the planes and pilots changed, but except for a break during World War II, the practice continues today, now by helicopter.

This Christmas, Frank wanted to pay special tribute to the new Airman in the family, his grandson Griffyn. So, a new 30” x 24” acrylic on wood panel painting shown below is added today to Frank’s lighthouse series. The lighthouse seen in this painting is the Boston Light.

Flying Santa
Flying Santa

This painting honors those who take special care of the all-important light keepers, as well as the remote Coast Guard outposts.

Now as Griffyn has his first Christmas away from home in the Air Force, we wish him and his group a safe and enjoyable Christmas, as we thank all those who bless and protect us from above.

Former Mariner’s charity helps families coping with disabilities

Former Mariner’s charity helps families coping with disabilities 

by ERIC WILKINSON / KING 5 News

KING5.com

Posted on January 5, 2012 at 6:07 PM

In many of our Making a Difference stories, we tell you about little-known heroes in the community. But this story in about someone you probably already know, former Seattle Mariner John Olerud.

He was an All-Star at the top of his game in 2000. Money, fame, and adored by his hometown fans. Olerud had it all, but that same summer he and his family were hit with a devastating disorder.

John’s daughter Jordan was born with an incredibly rare chromosome disorder leaving her unable to walk on her own, or even speak.

“It was definitely an eye opener that things don’t always go the way you’ve planned,” he said.

The Lundquist family knows that same heartache of broken plans. Their son Koby suffered a severe asthma attack in 2010, and a lack of oxygen left him permanently brain damaged.

Woodinville's Little Bit Therapeutic Riding Ranch
Woodinville's Little Bit Therapeutic Riding Ranch

While their struggles are similar, there is one glaring difference — the Oleruds have the means to put their daughter through special therapies, like those offered at Woodinville’s Little Bit Therapeutic Riding Ranch, helping Jordan make great advances.

The Lundquists couldn’t even properly bathe their boy because he was too big to lift in and out of the tub, and they couldn’t afford the $2,500 for a special shower. Even worse, both parents lost their jobs within 6 months of the asthma accident.

“There are some days it just bowls me over,” said Saroeun Lundquist, Koby’s mother. “If I dwell on it, it just chews me up.”

It’s that sort of inequality that inspired the Oleruds to do what they figured their daughter would want them to. They established The Jordan Fund, to help families with special needs children meet those needs.

“The help that we need just caring for her, feeding her, all the therapies — it’s just the realization that, wow, this is really tough,” said Olerud.

So, with the help of the Jordan Fund, the Lundquists got their new shower. Olerud says this isn’t about him as much as it is kids like Koby and Jordan who inspire others to make a difference through their quiet daily courage.

The Jordan Fund has donated more than $1 million to 130 special needs families and organizations.

Update: Dan Lundquist found a new job since Koby’s brain injury and the family’s financial situation has stabilized.

Do you know someone who’s making a difference in your community? We’d like to hear your stories about people going above and beyond to help others.

Original Story:

http://www.king5.com/news/local/Little-Bit-Making-a-Difference-136778798.html

Woodinville’s Little Bit Therapeutic Riding Ranch is a wonderful organization to support — Frank KIiewer