For our final group project, our group is focusing on the 5 areas that Jeffrey Sachs says countries need to invest in to eradicate poverty. These areas are agricultural inputs, basic health, education, power, transport, and communication services, and safe drinking water and sanitation. I’m focusing on Kenya’s development and investment in these five areas and the progress it is making through government and private involvement.
One of the most interesting, yet disheartening, areas I’ve encountered is Kenya’s struggle with proper sanitation.
According to water.org, 17 million people in Kenya don’t have safe drinking water. 28 million have no sanitation services, and half of the country lives in poverty. The infant mortality rate is also over 4%. Because there is a lack of sanitation, diarrhea is one of the leading causes of death of children. Water and sanitation related illnesses are also the leading cause of hospitalization for young children.
One of water.org’s programs is called Water Day. For a donation of $25, you can help give a local community access to clean drinking water. This is called their water day, the first day they have access to safe water. You can learn more about Water Day in this video:
For me, the most rewarding part of my research is seeing the progress the country is making. While it still faces many challenges, there is definite progress being made in Kenya. Private organizations are doing great work, and the government is stepping in to help its residents. With government and private involvement, we can make a difference and change the living conditions of millions of people. Better sanitation can lead to better productivity and longer lives, overall helping improve the economy of the country.