Progress on Drinking Water, Sanitation and Hygiene

No child should die or get sick as a result of drinking contaminated drinking water, being exposed to other people’s excreta, or having no place to wash their hands. No child should have to stay away from school for lack of a clean toilet and privacy. No mother or newborn should contract an infection from an unsanitary delivery room when they are most vulnerable. And no one should suffer the indignity of having to defecate in the open.

But unfortunately, far too many children, women and men around the world experience some or all of these risks to their health and wellbeing - and, thus to their futures.

That is why the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development recognize safe drinking water, effective sanitation, and good hygiene (WASH) both as an end in itself and as a driver of progress on many of the SDGS, including health, nutrition, education and gender equality. To meet these targets, we need a better understanding of the progress we have made and a strategic approach to meet the challenges that lie ahead in our shared effort to reach every community, every family, and every child.

WHO and UNICEF established the Joint Monitoring Programme for Water Supply, Sanitation and Hygiene in 1990, and published regular global updates throughout the Millennium Development Goal period. This report is the first update of the SDG period. It is by far the most compre- hensive global assessment of drinking water, sanitation and hygiene to date and includes a wealth of new information on the types of facilities people use and the level of service they receive.

Image credits

Icon image: Pixabay - Myanmar women collecting water