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2007.08.30

* UNICEF: Ceramic water filters improve water quality for rural communities in Myanmar

* 30 Jul 2007


Water is life. Lack of safe drinking water is a real threat to children’s health and survival. In Myanmar, more than 30 per sent of rural population still depends on pathologically contaminated surface water sources like ponds, steams and rivers for drinking water.

To better ensure the well being and the survival right of children, UNICEF in Myanmar and it partners are working with communities to develop access to clean and safe drinking water at both community and household level. Soundbite (English): U Khin Aung Thein, UNICEF Water and Sanitation project officer: “UNICEF is supporting a local NGO, Community Development Association in introducing and production of ceramic water filters that is appropriate method for treatment of drinking water at household level.”

As a jont program between UNICEF and CDA, a factory was set up in Yangon and more than 3,000 ceramic water filters have been distributed to villages and schools in Ayeyarwady division, where surface water is a major source for drinking water.

Soundbite (Burmese): Dr khin Mg Win, president of Community Development Association: ”The Happy Family Water Systems(ceramic water filters) is aimed to reduce incidences of diarrhoea, by providing economical, effective and sustainable solution for the elimination of bacteria and parasites from drinking water.”

A survey conducted by UNICEF said more than 80 per cent of the households provided with ceramic filters are using them regularly and customer satisfaction is above 90 per cent.

Soundbite (Burmese): Eh Wah, 26 years old, mother of two children, A Pyin the Phyu village “Thanks to UNICEF,I prefer the ceramic water filter than our usual way of purifying water with cloth filter because the water is cleaner and safer which is good for health.”

There is an increasing demand and a potential market for these ceramic water filters in Myanmar especially in delta and costal areas. Therefore UNICEF and its partners will continue providing the technical and financial supports to bring this innovative and successful household level water treatment option for drinking.



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