Directed by Amy Hart • Documentary • 2008 • 46 minutes
Through the inspiring story of Charles Banda, a humble Malawian fireman turned waterman, we see how water is a solution to many of the problems in his impoverished, sub-Saharan country. From hunger and poverty to women's equality and population control, HIV/AIDS to environmental sustainability, Banda makes it clear that the best way to assist and empower people in developing nations, and to achieve the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), is by putting water first.
Water First draws a clear correlation between clean water and all of the other Millennium Development Goals. The goals are a set of 8 targets set by the UN in the year 2000 and endorsed by 187 nations. Sadly, at the halfway mark, we are less than halfway there. Charles Banda believes that if more people knew about the MDGs we would have a much better chance of achieving them. And, if clean water was the top priority, achieving the goals would be much more feasible. '30% of the goals would automatically be achieved if everyone had clean water,' says John Oldfield of Water Advocates.