In Cambodia, access to safe and sustainable drinking water and adequate sanitation and hygiene facilities remains a challenge, particularly for families in rural areas. Polluted ponds and rivers remain the main source of water for cleaning, bathing and drinking, and access to latrines and hand washing facilities in the home and at school are limited.
Although an increasing number of rural households are securing adequate water supplies, ensuring water quality is a challenge. Water contaminated by faeces or polluted as a result of mining and other industrial activities can lead to illness and death among children.
RADIO FREE ASIA reported that the lack of access to clean water leaves Cambodian children vulnerable to diseases such as diarrhea, which is the second leading cause of death among children under five, according to UNICEF. The problem is costing money and lives in Cambodia, and in order to improve health outcomes, authorities should also pay attention to improving sanitation in both households and public institutions, the agency said.
Some 40 percent of primary schools and 35 percent of health centers in the country do not have access to safe water and sanitation, it said.
TACKLING WATER CRISIS IN RURAL CAMBODIA
Out of 40% of the population living in rural areas obtains water from a “non-improved source”, leading to frequent diarrhea among young primary school children. We are on a mission to change this and improve the accessibility of clean drinking water to rural children in Cambodia.