Each year on March 22, World Water Day highlights a specific aspect of freshwater, with this year’s focusing on the theme ‘Water and Sustainable Development’.
“One rarely thinks about one's consumption of water. It is therefore easy to forget that in some parts of the world, using even just 10 litres per day is a luxury in itself, and that access to drinking water is far from certain everywhere and for everyone,” says cosmetics maker L’Oréal.
The French firm has supported the Acqua for Life project since 2011, as part of the World Water campaign; and this initiative has already distributed 530 million litres of drinking water to 80 communities in 7 countries and on 3 continents: Africa (Ghana, Senegal, Ivory Coast), Asia (China, Sri Lanka) and Latin America (Bolivia, Mexico, and now Argentina).
This year, Giorgio Armani has been appointed Ambassador of the Expo Milano 2015 opening on April 30 with the theme ‘Feeding the planet, energy for life’. For this reason, L’Oreal wanted to raise the profile of Acqua for Life as it is developing its ‘Sharing Beauty with All’ campaign itself.
Unilever collaborative report
Elsewhere in the industry, and being to companies that are present in a number of consumer goods markets not just cosmetics, Unilever and P&G have also been doing their bit for World Water Day.
The Anglo-Dutch giant launched a new Global report through its Sunlight brand, along with WaterAid, Oxfam, and social enterprise, NextDrop.
The report examines the cost of time lost across the world by women and girls through the simple act of accessing clean water.
A fifth of the world’s population live in areas of water scarcity, and it is estimated that women and girls spend 200 million hours every single day simply collecting water for themselves and their families - time that could be spent working and earning, in education, with the family or contributing to the community.
The Unilever and co. report, released ahead of World Water Day, sets out to demonstrate why the interlinkages between water, sanitation and gender equality must be recognised at every level from government, civil society, business to community.
“At Sunlight we are doing this because we want to help reduce the burden on women whilst achieving sustainable growth,” says Hanneke Willenborg, Sunlight, Unilever VP Global Dishwash.
“We believe that the private sector can – and should - make a huge contribution to development issues. In this case that is giving time back for girls to finish school, time for women to earn a living, time for everyone to reach their full potential.”
P&G drinking water program
For P&G the campaign has meant focusing on clean drinking water, particularly for children, as part of its Children’s Safe Drinking Water (CSDW) Program.
“We celebrate World Water Day and the transformative impact that clean water has on children, their families and entire communities,” says the consumer goods firm.
“We also take a moment to thank our partners, along with the individuals and organizations around the world, who are working to provide and protect this essential and life-changing resource.”
Over the past 10 years, P&G has been inspired by the stories of people it has met in its collaborative efforts with global partners to help provide clean water in more than 75 countries.
As part of its 10 year anniversary, the CSDW Program has launched a new video showing a local primary school in Kenya and the positive impact it has had on the students as well as the whole community.