Access to Drinking Water Webinar

From Pakistan to Mozambique and from Sweden to Bangladesh, over 100 participants joined the Access to Drinking Water Webinar: Co-creation in Africa #SDG6 on 26-11-2020. Read more about the event by clicking here. Feel free to use the visual notes, but please refer to TU Delft | Global Drinking Water if you do so.

With the COVID-19 virus being a pandemic that reaches all across the globe including in rural communities, many questions arise wondering how the coronavirus relates to water. Is it still safe to use untreated water? Can the virus be present in tap water or rivers? How can I best protect myself from COVID-19?

To answer these questions, TU Delft | Global Initiative and TU Delft | Global Drinking Water together with TU Delft Prof. Gertjan Medema made an easy-to-use overview of 12 facts about the COVID-19 virus in water. The illustration details the importance of water access and hygiene during this global pandemic, and what behavioural changes people in rural communities can make to best prevent the spread of the COVID-19 when using water.

Proper hygiene is very important, not only on toilets and other surfaces, but also by washing hands regularly. Because the lack of hygiene could be an important element of spreading viruses, access to "clean" drinking water is now even more essential.

Please (feel free to) share this within your network and local communities, so that we can spread the right information.

Increasing the access to hand washing stations is very important in times of crisis. Hand washing kills the viruses on your hands, preventing that you contaminate yourself or others with the infectious COVID-19 virus. Different ‘Do-it-Yourself’ designs for such stations are visualised by Damienmarc Ford, in collaboration with TU Delft | Global Drinking Water.

The stations can be constructed using local crafts, from locally available components in urban areas. The designs presented are inspired by many videos available online and acts as suggestions. The list of videos and other resources can be found in the PDF document, which you can download via the link below. Feel free to share this document within your network, to spread the importance of access to hand washing for all. 

Working with real water, for real people

― Dr Doris van Halem, Scientific Director of the Global Drinking Water programme.

The Global Drinking Water programme supports various PhD and post-doc research projects into different aspects of safe water provision. Van Halem: “Our research focusses on the removal of a wide range of health-based contaminants that are a global challenge, such as arsenic, fluoride, pathogens and antibiotic resistant genes. We combine scientific research in the Waterlab of TU Delft and hands-on field research in a developing country. This has proven to speed up technology development, as well as local end-user engagement and technology adoption.”

Early on in the research process, PhD and post-doc students start working in the countries where the new technologies will eventually be used. This means that they are exposed to local conditions and are stimulated to tailor the new technology within this specific context, accelerating the development of better and more suitable technologies.

The programme is kicking-off with PhD projects on low-cost virus removal with ceramic membranes in Nicaragua, arsenic removal from groundwater in Bangladesh and smart phone participation in rural India. The projects specifically include BSc and MSc Civil Engineering students of both TU Delft and the target countries to strengthen the project and stimulate capacity building.  In addition, the programme is investing in a mobile water lab – “a water lab in a suitcase” – because in the field, it’s often very difficult to do good quality water analysis.




TU Delft | Global Drinking Water is a programme of TU Delft | Global Initiative.