Help for Better Sanitation
Mahatma Gandhi once stated that "Sanitation is more important than Independence". He very well understood that sanitation and cleanliness are integral parts of healthy and peaceful lives. It is for this reason Mahatma Gandhi (Bapuji) encouraged his fellow citizen to always live a clean and hygienic life. However, after the sad demise of Bapuji, this objective was lost and the Indians continued to lead an unhygienic and dirty lifestyle.
Sanitation has important implications for health and human capital development. Poor sanitation causes intestinal diseases that reduce the absorption of calories and nutrients and contribute to malnutrition. These diseases kill babies, stunt the physical and cognitive development of surviving children, and ultimately reduce their human capital development and earning potential later in life.
Of those who still go in the open, 600 million of those live in India alone. This represents almost two-thirds of the problem. More importantly, because India is such a densely populated country, it has the highest number of people going in the open per square kilometer. Research has shown that it’s not just the proportion of a population that goes in the open that’s important, but the number of people. This is because if more people in the neighborhood go in the open, a child is more likely come into contact with the bacteria and germs that will make her sick.
Even though the fraction of households without a toilet has been decreasing at about one percentage point per year in recent years, the size of the problem is actually still growing. Because population growth has outpaced the rate of sanitation improvements, the number of people going in the open has actually been increasing in many parts of north and central India. The disease environment in which children are growing up is becoming even worse in these areas, posing an increasing threat to the physical, cognitive, and human capital of children in these areas.
Bringing awareness among people in slum areas and building more and more toilets for them will help us in giving them a better life and not only to them but it will help our society to rise and make it a healthier society. A healthier sanitation will make a healthier you.
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