Source: The Mercury, 24 February, 1999, p.7


Precious water worth the walk

 
 
MOST people in Australia 
take access to clean water for 
granted, says 1998 Tasman- 
ian Business Woman of the 
Year Annette Downs. 
 
Ms Downs was in Hobart 
yesterday to launch Com- 
munity Aid Abroad's annual 
Walk Against Want on March 
21. 
 
Ms Downs said on average 
each person in Australia used 
673 litres of clean drinking 
water every day. 
 
Most was flushed down the 
toilet-11 litres a flush. 
 
A five-minute shower re- 
sulted in 40 litres going down 
the drain, a dishwasher used 
60 litres a cycle and a wash- 
ing machine 200 litres, while 
a sprinkler used 1000 litres 
each hour. 
 
"But many people in de- 
veloping countries live in 
communities where clean 
water is a rare commodity," 
she said. 
 
"Women, mostly mothers, 
spend many hours each day 
getting water. 
 
"They queue up to fill their 
heavy earthen pots, while 
animals drink and defecate in 
the same hole. 
 
"The return trip is back- 
breaking work . . . in heat . . . 
across rough terrain." 
 
Ms Downs is expecting 
twins. 
 
"At my stage of pregnancy I 
don't feel like walking around 
the block let alone collecting 
water," she said. 
 
She was joined in launch- 
ing the event by Jane Baylg 
a cast member of Mum's the 
Word at the Theatre Royal. 
 
Last year Walk Against 
Want raised more than 
$800,000 which funded a 
wells program in Ethiopia 
and Mozambique. 
 
This year money raised will 
be used to fund clean water 
programs in Sudan, Ethiopia 
and remote villages in the 
Philippines. As little as $100 
could supply a village with 
water for a year. 
 
Walks will be held in Laun- 
ceston, Devonport, Delotaine, 
Ulverstone, Queenstown, St 
Helens, Burnie and Hobart. 
 
Sponsor books are avail- 
able at the Body Shop, One 
World Shop and Community 
Aid Abroad. 


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