As Delhi grapples with its third wave of Covid-19, Surrey cricketers including Hashim Amla & Rory Burns are backing WaterAid’s call to help bring clean water to millions of people in India, so they can better defend themselves against the spread of infectious diseases.
Frequent handwashing with soap reduces the spread of coronaviruses by around a third (36%)[i], yet only 1 in 4 people in India have clean water at home, putting them on the back foot when it comes to maintaining good health and hygiene.
In support of WaterAid’s campaign to #BringWater to the missing 75%, Surrey County Cricket Club players Hashim Amla, Rory Burns, Morne Morkel, Will Jacks, Amar Virdi and Liam Plunkett have been trying their hand at defending the wicket with WaterAid’s specially designed bat, which is just a quarter of the size of a normal bat, while in practice at the Kia Oval.
Rory Burns, Surrey County Cricket Club captain and England batsman said: “I wouldn’t play a match without all the right equipment, and people shouldn’t be left to protect their health without something so vital as clean water.
“Please support WaterAid’s Bring Water campaign and help get clean water to vulnerable people in India, transforming lives for good.”
Hashim Amla, batsman for Surrey, said: “Clean water is a basic human right, but millions of people in India don’t have access to it.
“Without it, they cannot defend themselves from infectious diseases like coronavirus. By helping WaterAid raise funds to respond to the pandemic in India, we can all help make a difference to the lives of vulnerable communities.”
Also supporting the campaign is Lancashire’s Keaton Jennings, who said the size of the bat helped “hit home how tough it is for a lot of people during these times”, while Alex Hartley said her first thought was “how am I supposed to defend the wicket with only this”.
Mark Ramprakash, former batsman who played for England and Surrey, also signed a bat to help raise money for WaterAid.
WV Raman, former India batsman and head coach for the India women’s national team, nicknamed the Women in Blue, and batswoman Veda Krishnamurthy have also added their voice to the campaign.
Veda Krishnamurthy said: “How can India defend itself against the spread of diseases like Covid-19, when only a quarter of households have access to clean drinking water on site? Donate today and help bring water to the 75% who don’t have it.”
WaterAid’s Covid-19 projects in India are installing vital handwashing facilities in public areas such as markets, schools and health centres as well as running mass media campaigns to promote the importance of good handwashing and hygiene.
Vikas Kataria, Director – Resource Mobilisation, in WaterAid India, said: “WaterAid has been working in India over the last three decades to make clean water normal for everyone. We are working to lay the foundation through our work of keeping people healthy and helping communities lift themselves out of extreme poverty, to build a brighter future.
We are working closely with governments at the local level, to ensure clean water reaches the last mile, which is also the objective behind ‘Jal Jeevan Mission’.
COVID 19 has made it harder to reach our goals. To use a cricket parlance, we have to score more in fewer overs to win the match. The support of these wonderful cricketers and socially responsible cricket fans will help us score much needed boundaries to make clean water a reality for everyone.”
To donate to WaterAid’s #BringWater campaign and help transform more lives, visit: https://www.wateraid.org/uk/donate/cricket.