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World Toilet Day

Did you know that today is World Toilet Day? It’s dedicated annually to raising awareness of the 2.6 billion people (nearly half of the world’s population) who don’t have access to toilets and proper sanitation.

Poor sanitation

Ros Tamming, Concern Worldwide’s senior health adviser, said: “Concern welcomes the attention that World Toilet Day focuses on the issue of inadequate sanitation globally.

"Diarrhoeal diseases, frequently linked to poor sanitation, kill five times as many children in the developing world as HIV and AIDS.”

Ros added:  

That's 4,000 children dying every single day.

Cholera epidemic

Concern and other aid agencies are currently battling to contain the cholera epidemic in Haiti. This crisis highlights the importance of investing in facilities that prevent the spread of life-threatening diseases among the world’s poorest people.  

Improved health

Ros explains: 

Sanitation is an area that has traditionally been neglected in developing countries due to numerous competing priorities. However, sanitation yields huge economic benefits due to increased productivity and savings on healthcare costs. 

Sanitation improves the educational prospects for girls and increases girls' attendance at school, due to improved health and privacy. Adolescent girls miss an average of two months education per year in schools where there are no adequate sanitation facilities. Sanitation is vital for dignity, not just good health.