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