“The health toll in India is staggering. Diarrhea kills over 117,000 children under age five each year. Millions more struggle on with chronically infected intestines that don’t absorb nutrients and medicines well. The misery cycles on: Underweight women give birth to underweight babies, who are more vulnerable to infections, more likely to be stunted, and less able to benefit from vaccines. In 2016, 39 percent of Indian children under age five were stunted.
The Swachh Bharat mission offers each household about $190 to construct a pit latrine—far more than other developing nations spend. In Jawda, however, nobody uses the latrines. ‘It’s for washing clothes or bathing,’ says a woman in a pink-and-black sari, resting on a rope-strung cot in the shade. ‘We have a lot of open space. Why shouldn’t we use that?’ Grassy fields dotted with wildflowers surround her village.”
Read the full article by Elizabeth Royte: “Nearly a Billion People Still Defecate Outdoors. Here’s Why.” The article, and the photography by Andrea Bruce, are outstanding. You’ll read that r.i.c.e.’s Nikhil takes us on a tour of a Madhya Pradesh village, and Sangita provides statistics on child height.
Also, the printed book is now available for same-day delivery in India: