Downpatrick Woman Visits 10 Downing Street For Water Aid Charity

The reception held in support of WaterAid, aimed to draw attention to the 660 million people in the world without safe water and 2.3 billion without a safe decent toilet.

Celine Rogers, NI WaterAid representative with Samantha Cameron at 10 Downing Street in London.
Celine Rogers, NI WaterAid representative with Samantha Cameron at 10 Downing Street in London.

Celine Todgers, who had the privilege of witnessing WaterAid’s vital work first hand in India last year, was joined by WaterAid supporters from across the UK. Among those in attendance were prominent supporters including Members of Parliament,  former footballer and MBE Cyrille Regis, actor Dougray Scott and singer Rachel Stevens.

Celine Rodgers, Northern Ireland WaterAid representative, said: “It was only 150 years ago that Belfast dealt with the stench and filth of the polluted River Lagan and put in place the infrastructure to end cholera thereby transforming lives and our city’s streets. We can draw lessons from this even today.

“This month, the world’s leaders meet at a UN conference in Addis Ababa in Ethiopia to discuss how to fund the Sustainable Development Goals which aim to eradicate extreme poverty and create a more sustainable world by 2030. WaterAid is lobbying to ensure access to clean water, basic sanitation and good hygiene remains central in these efforts.”

Celine Rodgers outside No 10.
Celine Rodgers outside No 10.

The reception came a day before WaterAid supporters presented a 100,000 signature petition urging the UK Government to support a stand-alone goal on water and sanitation when the UN nation states sign up to the Sustainable Development Goals in September. The petition calls for “everyone, everywhere” to have access to water and sanitation by 2030 which is fundamental to the eradication of extreme poverty.
Barbara Frost, Chief Executive of WaterAid, said: “I would like to express WaterAid’s gratitude to Mrs Cameron for hosting this event to draw attention to the unacceptable fact that nearly 700 million people are still living without access to clean water and 2.3 billion without a decent toilet – the basics of life which are essential for families to thrive and to live healthy productive and dignified lives.
“2015 is a ground-breaking year as the UN states sign up to the new Sustainable Development Goals to eradicate extreme poverty by 2030. Water, sanitation and hygiene are essential in this ambitious goal to transform billions of lives and political will and resources are needed to make it happen.”
WaterAid’s vision is of a world where everyone has access to safe water and sanitation. The international organisation works in 37 countries across Africa, Asia, Central America and the Pacific Region to transform lives by improving access to safe water, hygiene and sanitation in some of the world’s poorest communities.

Since 1981, WaterAid has reached 23 million people with safe water and, since 2004, 21 million people with sanitation. For more information, visit, follow @WaterAidUK on Twitter, or visit WaterAid on Facebook at:
*  Around 1,400 children die every day from diseases caused by dirty water and poor sanitation. That’s one child every minute.
*  Over 660 million people (around one in ten) are without safe water
*  Over 2.3 billion people (around one in three) live without improved sanitation
*  For every £1 invested in water and sanitation, an average of £4 is returned in increased productivity.
*  Just £15 can help provide one person with access to safe water.