4.8 million people in Papua New Guinea do not have clean water.

6.2 milion people in Papua New Guinea do not have a decent toilet.

Over 200 children under five die every year from diarrhoeal diseases caused by poor water and sanitation in Papua New Guinea.

Papua New Guinea in the Pacific region is one of the most culturally diverse countries on the planet, but it is also one of the poorest. More than half the population lacks access to a safe water source or basic toilet.

The crisis

Access to clean drinking water and sanitation is an issue for over half of Papua New Guinea's population, many of whom live in remote, rural locations that are hard to reach with essential services.

There is low access to education in rural areas, and a widespread lack of understanding about the importance of toilets and basic hygiene practices to health. Over 6 million people don't have access to adequate sanitation, and as a result more than 200 children die every year from diarrhoea.

The annual monsoon season is often followed by periods of drought, so seasonal water shortages are commonplace. Periodically the country also suffers from severe droughts caused by the El Niño effect.

Our approach

In Papua New Guinea we work with local partner organisations to provide essential water and sanitation services using simple, low-cost technologies.

We work with schools to ensure students and teachers have water points and basic toilets, allowing them to focus on their school work. We also promote the need for hand-washing and good menstrual hygiene practices.

We use films and radio programmes to spread awareness of the difference that safe water, good hygiene and sanitation can make, and we call upon the country's decision-makers to prioritise these basic human rights.

In Papua New Guinea last year we reached:

  • 2,800 people with clean water
  • 1,600 people with improved sanitation.