While many ran the Paris Marathon on Sunday, it was one previously unknown Gambian woman who turned heads. Siabatou Sanneh did what would have previously been considered the unthinkable when she carried a jerry can of water on her head, while holding a placard that read: “In Africa, women travel this distance everyday to get potable water.” She was raising awareness for the charity Water for Africa and in an interview she said that she and her two daughters walked eight kilometers every day with a bucket containing 20 liters of water and it was an essential routine for her family to be able to drink water, cook and wash clothes.
Water continues to be a major issue for many nations in sub-Saharan Africa. Last month, the United Nations warned that the consequence of today’s unsustainable growth is that “the world will face an increasingly severe global water deficit.” UNICEF estimates that about 157 million people in the Eastern and Southern Africa region do not have access to a clean and safe water distribution system.
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