Facts and Figures

A woman washing her hands outside her latrine 


  • 2.3 billion people in the world – almost one in three – do not have a decent toilet of their own. (WHO/UNICEF Joint Monitoring Programme (JMP) Report 2017 update)

  • Since 2004, we have reached 21 million people with improved sanitation. 
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  • 844 million people in the world – one in nine – do not have clean water close to home. (WHO/UNICEF Joint Monitoring Programme (JMP) Report 2017 update)
  • In 2015-16 we reached 1.9 million people with safe water and over 3 million people with sanitation.
    (WaterAid, 2016)
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Mary from Malawi with her young child Faith  


  • Diarrhoea is the third biggest killer of children under five years old in Sub-Saharan Africa. (Child Health Epidemiology Reference Group (CHERG) 2012)

  • Around 289,000 children under-five die every year from diarrhoeal diseases caused by dirty water and poor sanitation. That's almost 800 children per day, or one child every two minutes. (WASHWatch.org)
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A girl and a boy wash their hands in front of a toilet block  


  • Hygiene promotion is one of the most cost effective health interventions according to the World Bank. (Disease Control Priorities, third edition (volume 2): Reproductive, maternal, newborn, and child health, 2016)
  • If everyone everywhere practised good hygiene, the number of diarrhoeal deaths would be cut by 23%.
    (Prüss-Ustün A, Bartram J, Clasen T et al. Burden of disease from inadequate water, sanitation and hygiene in low- and middle-income settings: a retrospective analysis of data from 145 countries. Tropical Medicine & International Health. 2014;19(8):894-905. doi:10.1111/tmi.12329.)
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