Clean Water, Healthy Economy


Transcript


Voice 1

Welcome to Spotlight. I’m Adam Navis

Voice 2

And I’m Liz Waid. Spotlight uses a special English method of broadcasting. It is easier for people to understand, no matter where in the world they live.

Voice 1

Today’s Spotlight is on a new invention. This invention can make people healthier and improve a country’s economy.

Voice 2

Khadija lives in Yemen. Getting clean water was a problem for Khadija. She needed to walk two kilometers to collect clean water. She made this journey three times a day. The water in Khadija’s small village is not clean. It is polluted with dirt and bacteria. The dirty water made Khadija and her children sick. Khadija told Yemen Today,

Voice 3

“My children suffered from severe diarrhea every month. They would be too thin and sleep all day. For a mother, it is hard to watch your children suffer like that.”

Voice 2

Dirty water is bad for children. But it is bad for the economy, too. In Yemen, clean water is hard to find for many people. Many people get sick. Eighty percent of the people in Khadija’s village suffer from severe diarrhea. They suffer from many other sicknesses found in water too. Sick people can not go to work or school. And there is no hospital in the village. Travelling to get medical help costs a lot of money.

Voice 1

But dirty water is not a part of Khadija’s life any more. Khadija has a better life. She has clean water every day. Her children are not sick. Khadija’s village is testing a new device that cleans dirty water. The device is called a filter. The Silver Filter Company makes the filters. Workers make the filter with clay from the earth, small particles of wood, and silver.

Voice 2

Workers mix the soft clay with small particles of wood. Then, they put the clay filter in a kiln. This special stove uses a very hot fire to harden the clay filter. The particles of wood burn away and leave small holes in the filter. Water will leak out of the holes. After the filter hardens, it comes out of the kiln. Finally, workers add silver. The silver is what cleans the water. The silver kills bacteria.

Voice 1

A plastic container holds the filter. Khadija pours water into the filter. Then she waits for small drops of water to come through the filter. The water collects in the plastic container. She can clean 1 ½ - 3 liters of water every hour. The filtered water is cleaner than water in a bottle.

Voice 2

Tariq lives in Khadija’s village. At first, he did not want a filter because it seemed too simple. He explained to Yemen Today.

Voice 4

“It did not run on electricity. It is made out of clay. You do not have to change any of its parts. I did not think it had value. But I know now that it is like a gift from God.”

Voice 1

Many Yemeni people do not know that dirty water makes them sick. Tariq said,

Voice 4

“Before the silver filters we did not know that we could get sick from the water. We used to take dirty water and pour it through a cloth. We thought that was enough.”

Voice 2

Tariq wants other people to know that dirty water will make them sick. He also wants them to have the chance to invest in a water filter.

Voice 4

“I feel sad that other people do not have a filter. There needs to be a way to bring the filters to every village in Yemen. People are sick and they do not know why.”

Voice 1

The World Health Organization studies how dirty water hurts the economy of poor nations like Yemen. Dirty water has many bad effects. Adults miss work when they are sick. They need to stay home with their children when their children are sick. Missing work means that they make less money. Business slows down when workers are home sick. It costs businesses a lot of money to help their workers with doctor and hospital bills.

Voice 2

When children are sick, they miss school. Their education suffers. When children are sick many times they do not finish school. Also, disease causes children to develop slowly. They grow into under-developed adults. Even worse, children often die from disease. Finally, treating disease costs a lot of money. All of these negative effects mean that disease hurts the economy in many countries.

Voice 1

There are many organizations that bring aid to poor countries. They know the damage that dirty water does to people and their economy. These organizations work hard to get filters to more people. Potters Without Borders is one of these organizations. Richard Boni is a member of Potters Without Borders. With their help, he started The Silver Filter Company in Yemen.

Voice 2

Boni has worked in Yemen for 18 years. Making filters is the most important job that he has ever had. Boni loves to watch the filters when they are in the kiln. He told National Public Radio,

Voice 5

“The kiln is very hot. It is one of the most beautiful things. You can open a little window and look in the kiln door. The filters are red hot. To me, it is wonderful.”

Voice 2

Boni taught Ali Sala Solomon how to make the filters. Solomon owns the filter factory. Solomon used to make stoves in his factory. But now, with the filters, he is saving lives. He makes 100 filters a day.

Voice 1

Solomon told National Public Radio that bacteria and other problems stay in the filter. What comes out is pure water. He is devoted to this new technology. The filters are simple but work well.

Voice 2

Boni and Solomon would like to build more filters. They hope to expand their business. But this is not so that they can make more money. Instead, they would like to make more filters so that they can lower the price. They want more families to have clean water. They want Yemen to have healthy workers.

Voice 1

People like Khadija and Tariq have learned how important clean water is. Their village is healthy. Diarrhea in babies and children is reduced by 80%. Khadija’s children go to school. Tariq does not miss work. People like Solomon and Boni want more people to have filters. Together, they know that healthy people make a healthy economy.

Voice 2

The writer of this program was Kathryn Hoffman. The producer was Adam Navis. The voices were from the United States. All quotes have been adapted for this program and voiced by Spotlight. Computer users can hear our programs, read our scripts, and see our word list on our website at www.radioenglish.net. This program is called “Clean Water, Healthy Economy.

Voice 1

If you have a comment or a question for Spotlight you can email us. Our email address is radio@radioenglish.net. We hope you can join us again for the next Spotlight program. Goodbye!

Question:

Do you have to filter the water you drink?

Comments


Avatar Spotlight
tank!
said on June 08, 2011

I think that in modern world each family should have a filter! Because of industry and some other water pollutants we we risk our health. we should clear water and take care of our health!!!
Clean water, healthy nation!!!

Avatar Spotlight
Chuong Mai
said on June 08, 2011

A lot of families in Vietnam, especially in the country side, are facing with polluted water sources. In Vietnam, there is a summer campaign called “The Green Summer”. Every summer, when a semester finished, students from the cities come to villages in the country side to support people there to clean the water sources, repair houses, teach the children… Students from other countries are also welcomed to the campaign too.

Avatar Spotlight
SinabrO
said on June 13, 2012

I think clean water is the most important thing in our life because we are made up of water. In the future I’d like to build a filter company in poor countries
I am very sad when I watch them drink dirty water.
Now many rich countries in the world need to know the condition of poor countries and help them

humble71's avatar
humble71
said on June 14, 2012

I’m agree..“Healthy people make a healthy economy” . The invent is awesome , it’s cheap and very useful. In poor countries it could be a great help to use this kind of filter. I think the organization should talk with governments in poor countries to offer the assistance to create small factories near the poor villages to distribute this excellent system to clean the water especially for kids and elderes.