Sarah Kemp's Zambia diary: Part one

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Who'd have thought that corked wine would actually benefit anyone? Well it has.

Decanter Zambia WaterAid

I'm sitting in WaterAid's Office in Lusaka, Zambia on the first day of my visit to find out first-hand how the money raised from Decanter's Wine into Water programme is spent.

When we launched the Decanter World Wine Awards in 2004 we realised we needed spare bottles in case a wine was corked or needed retasting for a higher medal.

An early convent education influenced the decision to sell the leftover wine and turn it back into water, hence Decanter's 'Wine into Water' Charity Programme. Over the years we have raised over £260,000.

Zambia was one of WaterAid's oldest projects.  Here life expectancy is 47 years.

Paul Kapotwe, the regional director explained: 'Zambia's government spends only 3% of its budget on water and sanitation, 90% water sanitation is donor funded.'

Here the rainy season lasts six months and the floods bring cholera. The season starts next month. It's a long way from the awards ceremony at the Royal Opera House and Mr Spurrier in black tie.

Christie’s Fine and Rare Wine Auction will be held on October 18 at their sale location at 8 King Street, St. James’s, London. More information and bidding assistance is available from Chris Munro at CMunro@christies.com +44 (0)20 7752 3140.

Alternatively sign in or register at Christies.com to place a bid online



Zambia statistics:

Every year, 10,000 children under the age of five in Zambia die from diarrhoeal diseases caused by poor water and sanitation (UNICEF 2010, WHO 2010). The average life expectancy is 47.
Less than half the population (48%) has access to improved sanitation, while 61% has access to a clean water source.

Just £15 can enable one person to access safe water, improved hygiene and sanitation.

Based on this figure, the £260,000 raised by Decanter could have helped transform the lives of 17,300 people around the world through improved access to clean water, improved hygiene and sanitation.

Sample water costs for Zambia:

£150 could pay for a rope pump.
£937 could pay to rehabilitate a hand dug well serving 150 people.
£3,750 could pay for a borehole (excluding a pump).

Sample sanitation costs for Zambia:

£8 could pay for a 60cm x 60cm latrine slab.
£500 could pay to construct a girl-friendly Ventilated Improved Pit latrine for 45 schoolgirls.
Sample hygiene promotion costs for Zambia
£75 could pay to construct a school hand-washing facility large enough for 30 pupils to use at a time.
£187 could pay for a bicycle to support community hygiene facilitators to travel locally.
£100,000 could pay for a project targeting 10,000 people with water, sanitation and hygiene promotion.

General WaterAid statistics:

• 783 million people in the world do not have access to safe water. This is roughly one in ten (WHO/UNICEF)
• 2.5bn people do not have access to adequate sanitation, almost two-fifths of the population (WHO/UNICEF)
• Diarrhoea kills more children every year than AIDS, malaria and measles combined. It is the third biggest killer of children in sub-saharan Africa, (WHO 2008)
• Half the hospital beds in developing countries are filled with people suffering from diseases caused by poor water, sanitation and hygiene (UNDP)
• Women in Africa and Asia often carry water on their heads weighing 20kg, the same as the average UK airport luggage allowance (UNDP).
• For every $1 invested in water and sanitation, an average of $4 is returned in increased productivity (Hutton)

What has WaterAid done?
• Since 1981, we have reached 15.89 million people with safe water
• Since 2004, we have reached 11.02 million people with sanitation.