ADDIS ABABA – The Government of Denmark through its partnership with UNICEF has announced a DKK 70 million (approx. 10 million USD) contribution over the next three years to support UNICEF’s water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH) program in Ethiopia.
The Danish contribution, UNICEF says, will also improve access to WASH services in schools and health facilities, increase the installation of water points and promote safe hygiene practices which are especially critical to mitigate the spread of COVID-19.
“Acute shortages of clean water, inadequate sanitation, and poor hygiene practices threaten the lives of children leaving them prone to life-threatening diseases like diarrhea and other water-borne illnesses,” said Kira Smith Sindbjerg, Danish Ambassador to Ethiopia.
“Therefore, sustainable access to clean water in Ethiopia and the whole of Africa is a key development priority for Denmark,” the ambassador added.
The UN agency said the further investments will bolster its emergency program, which provides life-saving WASH services at the onset of an emergency, such as in the current drought-affected areas.
Gianfranco Rotigliano, UNICEF Representative in Ethiopia, said the UN agency “is extremely grateful” to the Government of Denmark for the latest contribution.
“Every child has the right to clean water,” Rotigliano said.
“When you provide a child with safe water, and basic toilets, and teach good hygiene practices, children are given a healthier start in life and are able to survive and thrive.”
According to UNICEF, 70 million people do not have access to clean water and 90 percent of all children lack access to basic sanitation in the country.
[Featured image: FILE/UNICEF]