Access to safe-clean water, adequate sanitation, and proper hygiene education can reduce illness and death from disease, leading to improved health, poverty reduction, and socio-economic development. However, many countries are challenged to provide these basic necessities to their populations, leaving people at risk for water, sanitation, and hygiene (WaSH)-related diseases. CEMREST programs such as the Safe, Clean Water Supply systems can empower communities to improve their water by using household treatment options.
Water is considered to be the most important resource for sustaining ecosystems, which provide life-supporting services for people, animals, and plants. Because contaminated water is a major cause of illness and death in rural regions in Cameroon, water quality is a determining factor in human poverty, education, and economic opportunities. Unfortunately, worldwide water quality is declining, threatening the health of ecosystems and humans worldwide. Various factors influence this deterioration, including population growth, rapid urbanization, land use, industrial discharge of chemicals, and factors resulting from climate change.
Tackling Water related challenges requires a spectrum of interventions. The prevention or minimization of water pollution is critical to improving drinking water quality. Interventions to improve quality drinking water, range from disinfecting water at the household level to water management at the community level. In some situations, more than one type of intervention is needed.
Groups such as female-headed households, the elderly and ethnic minorities are disproportionately poor, and among the poor they tend to be most adversely hit by a lack of water and sanitation services. The voices of these most vulnerable poor groups may be the last heard when such services are established.
CEMREST wants to create access to safe drinking water for all. Water is the source of life. No human being, animal or plant in this earth can survive without water. Millions of people in Cameroon do not have access to water. Fair economic development is severely limited by unequal distribution of water, drought, global climatic change as well as local inflicts about water control, has led to scarcity of water in poor countries. Women and children suffer most from shortage of water, covering long distances in search for water.
CEMREST wants safe and accessible drinking water which is affordable to all people for production and consumption and to see water supplies managed in democratic and sustainable manner. We need a comprehensive approach for poor rural regions as a whole, including ground water (digging wells) storage of rain water (construction of storage tanks) small and large irrigation, tap water projects and afforestation. We also provide education on hygiene. Relieving hunger in Cameroon has to begin with access to clean water. It may seem simple, but we forget that without access to a reliable source of water, crops is hard to grow and even more difficult to preserve and prepare. It takes huge amounts of water to grow crops. Just think, nationally we use 70% of our water sources for agriculture and irrigation, and only 10% on domestic uses.
Water is fundamental to relieving hunger in the developing world. 84% of people, who don't have access to improved water, also live in rural areas, where they live principally through subsistence agriculture. Sometimes, areas that experience a lack of water suffer because of poor water management, but more often it is a relatively simple economic issue that can be addressed.