We know how to solve sanitation, but by looking at the budgets of countries both developing and developed you can see there’s something wrong going on.  According to George, “Pakistan spends 47 times more on its military than it does on water and sanitation, even though 150,000 children die of diarrhea in Pakistan every year.” Then you look at the minuscule budget going towards water and sanitation and “75% to 90% of it will go to clean water supply.”

three hands holding a wad of U.S. dollar bills

Photo from Flickr

In order to solve lack of sanitation we have to attack the source: open defecation. Otherwise fresh water will continue to be contaminated, and diseases will continue to spread leaving nothing being accomplished and resources and money wasted. Billions of people are willing to invest but cannot do it by themselves. As WSP states it, “they need political courage, financing, and commitment from governments.” Governmental influence on sanitation can reap massive social and economic benefits; its just needs to be done. Budgets and priorities need to shift. By providing toilets countries will reap the benefits financially and will also in turn improve health, education, and safety for their citizens. Organizations such as UNICEF focus on getting the word out to political people in the government. By supporting UNICEF or spreading the word in your own way, you can make a difference!