(Mirror Daily, United States) – There is a way social media can help, as the poop emoji brings awareness to sanitation problems worldwide that affect billions of people and genuinely endanger lives. It’s a luxury that most with a smartphone certainly already have. Proper relieving facilities and sanitation are easy to get in developed worlds.
The problem is far more wide spread in developing countries, but that doesn’t mean those with access to social media cannot help. Non-profit organization WaterAid means to put technology to good use by launching their #GiveAShit online campaign. The purpose is to allow users to customize and accessorize the poop emoji as far as their heart’s desires.
Some say the emoji represents ice cream, but let’s face it, it’s poop.
Those with the app can individualize the brown, curly dung to feature certain features, such as hat, eyewear, colors, hairstyles, or anything else. There’s nearly full liberty toward creativity, and definitely an entertainment factor in telling people ‘I’ll show you my poop’ in a cheery tone. However, the campaign has a nobler purpose in mind.
WaterAid is aiming to promote awareness for World Toilet Day, which aims to draw attention to the lack of sanitation in numerous countries. Problems such as no proper relieving facilities or lack of hygiene are the agents of disease, assault, rape, and even death for some nations. It’s an unfortunate fact that is still not yet fixed, and ruining lives around the world.
According to the United Nations (UN), around 2.4 billion people worldwide don’t have proper toilet facilities. That means that 1 in 3 people in the world are less fortunate than anyone who actually has a bathroom with clean water and a toilet. These are basic needs of humans that some unfortunately lack. WaterAid means to help them, and make sure the crisis will stop by 2030.
In a few countries, the problem is dangerously overlooked and severe. In Pakistan, for example, around 25 million people don’t have access to toilets. In India, 69% of the urban population and 18% of the urban population are forced to defecate in the open. This leaves the door open for disease due to lack of hygiene or excrement-transmitted conditions.
It has been estimated that around 314,000 children under the age of 5 years old die each year due to diarrheal illness that could’ve been prevented. Through simple sanitation and access to facilities, lives could have been spared.
The problem is tragically more common among women and young girls. By defecating in the open, they increase their vulnerability to assault or rape. Some girls are even deprived of education due to lack of proper facilities in schools that would force them to defecate in front of boys. The problem is increasingly more grave during days of menstruation.
In order to address the issue, WaterAid is spreading awareness of the problem through social media, and cute emojis that underline a serious problem. Perhaps by encouraging discussions about the importance of both toilets and proper sanitation, the health of the population can be improved. And thus, one third of the world may not find themselves at risk due to lacking a basic human need.
Photo credits: businessinsider.com