Our approach

Access to WASH builds community resilience to many threats, including climate change, population growth and changing land-use. This is the best way to increase climate resilience because people begin to use resilient sources such as groundwater rather than vulnerable surface water sources.

We focus on securing access to safe WASH for poor communities. For example, through our work on water security we:

  • Improve access to safe water supplies.
  • Increase water storage capacity and strengthen monitoring of water supplies so droughts can be detected early.
  • Facilitate community-level risk assessment and planning.
  • Strengthen links between communities and governments so community voices are heard and governments can respond.

Where flooding is a problem, for example in Bangladesh, we make infrastructure more robust where necessary (e.g. by raising latrines so they do not contaminate water supplies during floods). We work closely with communities to help them reduce their disaster risk using the ‘participatory WASH vulnerability analysis’ approach.

We work with decision-makers at all levels to draw their attention to the particular vulnerabilities of people with inadequate access to safe and sustainable WASH.

We want a world where everyone’s access to WASH is prepared for and protected from an uncertain climate future. For more information on our approach to climate change see the latest WaterAid and Climate Change briefing note