One of the least discussed, yet most pervasive stigmas in gender equality is female menstruation. In every country, the veil of silence around menstruation contributes to sexism that can hold women back in their personal lives and professional careers.
I'm not fearful of not reaching Everest's summit. I have a possibly tongue-in-cheek theory that all motivations in life can be distilled down to fear. It is omnipresent, so you might as well be scared about something worthwhile.
As we mark the second International Day of the Girl on October 11, I'm calling for a similar recognition of the power and potential of girls, enlisting them in our mission to bring safe, sustainable sanitation to the billions who live without it.
Haiti has been a microcosm for all that could go wrong in the advancement of human potential. Before the country was ravaged by an earthquake, it was ravaged by a nonexistent educational system and no sanitation system whatsoever.
More people in the world now have a mobile phone than have a toilet. As we celebrate International Women's Day on March eighth, let's not forget that girls and women suffer the most from lack of sanitation.
Polio is a water-related disease and we were left behind. Malaria has water- and sanitation-related aspects and we are being left behind. And our most obvious sweet spot -- NTDs -- have just left us behind again.
We can all agree on the gravity of this challenge and the efficacy of solutions -- solutions that were developed more than 100 years ago. Yet today, more people have access to a cell phone than a toilet. Proper toilets and safe water are inextricably linked.