The UN has designated November 19 as World Toilet Day. Its Sustainable Development Goal 6  (SDG6) calls for safe toilets and water for all by 2030. That’s only six years away and yet still three and a half billion people in the world are living without safe toilets, and 419 million have no toilet at all and have to ‘go’ on open ground. This causes the spread of disease which kills 1000 children under 5 every day and poses a threat to nature.

For me as a Christian this is a real challenge. Jesus’ commandment that we should love our neighbour as ourselves is far from being observed. But whether or not you are a person of faith, does is not make sense to treat everyone with the respect with which we would like to be treated? Can you imagine what it would be like to have no toilet and no safe water for drinking and washing? 

So what can we do to make safe toilets and water for all a reality? It’s really not very hard.

We need to make sure that we:

  • never waste water or put pollutants down toilets and drains.
  • support charities like Water Aid and Toilet Twinning (many local churches, pubs and other businesses have twinned their toilets – can you think of somewhere else that should? Could you help them do it?)
  • put pressure on our political leaders to make the issue a higher priority.

Individually we can’t change the world – but working together we can!

Written by Pam Martin of St John the Evangelist, Levens.

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