Water security is vital to the livelihoods of the rural poor, to their employment,income, food and their prospects for escaping poverty. The lack of availability and the poor quality of freshwater have been reported to be two of the most limiting factors for development in Africa, constraining food production, industrial activities, contributing significantly to the burden of disease.
Access to a reliable supply of water makes it possible for people to diversify their livelihoods, increase food productivity and reduce the risks associated with drought. It enables producers to enter higher value-added areas of production and creates income and employment and it gives people the security to undertake investments.
The contribution of water and sanitation services to development is of course far wider than their impact on households. Water is a key factor of production and sustenance of livelihoods and communities. It sustains the natural environment which is why it is not only the quantity of water available which is critical but also its quality, its fitness for use. For this reason, Caritas Kenya strives to promote water management principle that, for both sanitation services and economic activities, measures of control against elements which can pollute water and render it unfit for use.