Oxfam Australia this month launches $1 Day, a national event aiming to raise $500,000 to give people around the world the lifesaving gift of clean water.
Oxfam’s Director of Public Engagement, Pam Anders, said one in eight people cannot access clean water claiming more lives over the past century than any other health issue.
“Globally, diarrhoea and other diseases caused by dirty water take the life of a child every 20 seconds. Even worse, these children are the smallest and most vulnerable — aged under five,” Ms Anders said.
“If you find a spare $1 during the month of May – in the car, under the couch, at the bottom of your bag – use it to change the life of someone living in poverty. Small donations can make a big difference.”
The official day is 31 May 2016, but Australians are being asked to donate their small change throughout May.
“Ready access to safe, clean drinking water is something we take for granted,” Ms Anders said.
“But in too many countries where we work, dirty water is keeping whole communities in poverty. Imagine if everyone you knew donated $1, what a difference that could have on someone’s life.”
Children like six-year-old Yolanda from Ixopo, South Africa, have lived past the age of five, using just four sticks and a plastic container. Together, these simple items make a “tippy-tap”, a life-saving hand-washing device that Oxfam installed in her community, thanks to donations from generous members of the public. And it only cost $21.
“We see her doing things and we follow, because we realise that she is a very clever child, and she knows how to do beautiful things,” Yolanda’s grandfather Reginald says. “What I have noticed — that is important — is that she washes her hands after using the toilet. And before having meals, her hands must be clean … she’s made a very big difference.”
Your $1 can provide ingenious solutions like tippy-taps, Oxfam buckets and hygiene education – all solutions that save lives. Together, we can make sure children live to see their sixth birthdays.
Anyone can get involved in Oxfam’s $1 Day by hosting an event with friends and family, getting the local school involved or throwing a casual Friday at the office. Or just donate $1.
To register your event, to make a donation, or for more information go to www.onedollarday.org.