It is a great matter of relief for us that reputed company like Unilever Foundation and Domex have joined hands with Unicef to help improve access to basic sanitation for millions of people in India where open defecation is one of the biggest challenge to health! About 597 million people defecate in open and open defecation makes them susceptible to the attack various disease causing microbial organisms like bacteria, amoeba and viruses. Due to weak body functions children like Babli are more prone to these diseases. Shockingly fact sheets suggest that 20% of death of children under 14 years of age are due to improper sanitation and poor hygiene! It is more scary to know that in such scenario, less than 6% of rural children in India under 6 years of age use toilet facilities which allows us to deduce that rest 94% defecate in open fields! Let us spread awareness of the health hazards of open defecation and add up to the noble Domex Initiative.
As I mentioned before, more than 94% of village kids like Babli are defecating in open, they are subjected to dangerous bacterial, viral and worm infections. Diarrhea and worm infection being two common diseases affecting school going children, 443 million school days are lost every year! Not only education is affected. Ill health causes malnutrition and stunting to these affected children. We can feel the gravity of this social health problem by the data that 215,000 children under five years of age die from diarrhea alone every year and India has highest number of under-5 death globally! It is time to act my friends. Let us save our future generation from the curse of this age old habit of open defecation. Let us work together to give them a better future, a healthier tomorrow, a hygienic country to grow.
Millennium development goal aims at basic sanitation, toilets, latrines and hand wash and at our current rate of progress facts suggest we would be able to cover just 67% of the target goal. So, we need to focus more and speed up improvement on sanitation sector in our country. CATS (community approaches to total sanitation) programs by Unicef focus on advocating demands for sanitation at the community level. We can volunteer in CATS by educating the community about the scenario of open defecation in our country so that open defecators stop defecating in open out of a sense of responsibility and concern, not merely for temporary eyewash. Mass media must be involved to bring about a greater turnover on our effort. We can take peaceful goodnight sleep when Open Defecation Free status is achieved, the day when each and every Indian family would use its own toilet facility and no Babli has to fall sick by defecating in the open.
Let us act. You can bring about the change in the lives of millions of kids, thereby showing your support for the Domex Initiative. All you need to do is “click” on the “Contribute Tab” on www.domex.in and Domex will contribute Rs.5 on your behalf to eradicate open defecation, thereby helping kids like Babli live a dignified life.
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