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Addressing Hunger, Poverty Involves Improving WASH Through Local Government

Huffington Post: Looking Local: Addressing Hunger, Poverty and WASH
John Coonrod, executive vice president of The Hunger Project

As part of a blog series on WASH and MDGs, John Coonrod writes, “In a world that has made so much progress in achieving many of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), cutting extreme poverty in half by 2010, why has it not yet cut hunger in half? Most people are surprised that it has virtually nothing to do with food supply, and far more to do with sexism, open defecation, and weak local government. … Hunger is a violation of human rights, and human rights are built on the concept of human dignity. There is perhaps nothing more fundamental to our human dignity than water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH). … Women … are making a difference in hunger and poverty in their communities by tackling the issue of WASH through the local government system. Their efforts are improving the nutrition of the children of their communities, allowing other women to study or engage in livelihood activities, and creating an environment where women’s voices can be heard…” (3/30).