Achieving universal access to safe drinking water is a good thing for many reasons, but for one of the biggest is improving health and wellbeing, and this is why water supply is generally grouped with sanitation and hygiene to form the WASH (or WaSH) sector. The current pandemic sweeping across much of the world has clearly demonstrated that access to safe water and improved sanitation is still not enough – without good hygiene behaviour, individuals put themselves, their families, and everyone they encounter at risk.
There is a lot of information available on the internet, but not so much that is that is directly relevant for those working in rural areas of low/middle-income countries. However, here are some suggestions of places to start (we will add to this list as we compile more - please send us any recommendations to email@example.com or via Twitter):
How can WASH practitioners best respond to the COVID-19 outbreak in developing countries?
Waterlines editor Richard Carter says: 'COVID-19, represents the most extensive global public health emergency of recent times. All countries face exceptional challenges at this time, although the nature of the crisis will vary by country and region.
Two widely important elements in interventions to reduce transmission of COVID-19 are (a) the availability of sufficient domestic water, near to the home, to permit good household hygiene; and (b) the widespread, frequent and effective practice of handwashing with soap and water.
"To help our partners in responding to this health crisis in their countries, we have compiled different resources and tools around COVID-19 and WASH, which include documents, videos, social media materials with message on public health, webinar recordings, etc.
Please also see SWA's CEO, Catarina de Albuquerque, message of how this health crisis is connected to everything that SWA partners do."