Written by

September 17, 2021

Preventable, Water-Related Diseases Keep Children Out of School.

An estimated 443 million school days are lost each year from water-related illness.

In many cases, children are ailing with diarrhoea, typhoid, cholera, dysentery or other water related illnesses and are unable to go to school. In some cases, children take care of sick family members instead of going to class. Children are also tasked with helping their families fetch safe water from long distances if there isn’t a close water source.

When the school does not have sanitation facilities, children defecate in the open or miss class as they search for a place to go to the bathroom. This not only makes them miss class, it facilitates the further spread of disease.

The majority of the responsibility to fetch water falls on women and girls, they spend many hours of their days fetching water or travelling to rivers and streams to see to their families needs. Those duties kept some girls from getting to school on time, causing them to miss important lessons and fall behind their male classmates. Once they reach puberty, girls tend to miss school since there are no sanitation facilities for them to take care of their hygiene needs during menstruation.

The presence of a safe water supply and clean, functioning, private toilet facilities can be the difference between dropping out and getting an education. Furthermore, hygiene education at school can begin a lifetime of better health for all children.

Help keep children in school by donating towards Islamic Relief’s water projects.
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