ICROSS and SODIS work to improve water quality

UNICEF and the WHO estimate that more than 1 billion people around the world are without year-round access to safe drinking water. Each year more than 1.5 million children under the age of 5 years die as a result of waterborne disease in Africa and Asia. Solar Disinfection (SODIS) is a technique for making contaminated drinking water safe where transparent bottles are filled with contaminated water and placed in direct sunlight. The water is safe to drink after 6 hours exposure to the sun.

70% of East African Hospital visits are caused by contaminated water. Over 40,000 deaths occur every week from unsafe water and a lack of basic sanitation, 90% are children under 5 years old. Over a Billion people do not have access to clean water, most live in the poor world. ICROSS has a long term programme to improve water quality, prevent water borne disease and protect water sources.

The Solar Disinfection of contaminated drinking water is a low cost method of purifying water. The early research in SODIS was done by the RCSI / ICROSS research team in the mid 1990s. This important way of improving water by making it safe to drink has been scaled up and the SODIS project has been extended to South Africa , Zimbabwe, Cambodia and other countries. The aim of the SODISWATER project is to demonstrate that solar disinfection of drinking water is an effective intervention against a range of waterborne diarrheal diseases at household level and as emergency relief in the aftermath of natural or man-made disasters.

ICROSS programmes in Kenya are extending SODIS as part of a comprehensive community health strategy to reduce water borne disease. With your help we can do even more.

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