We are resolutely focused on making clean water, decent toilets and good hygiene normal for everyone, everywhere.

The world has made huge progress in increasing access to these essential services. However, 785 million people still don’t have clean water close to home, 2 billion don't have a decent toilet of their own and 43% of healthcare facilities do not have hand hygiene facilities at points of care. And climate change, which is already affecting the communities we work with, is compounding challenges to building sustainable services.  

But we are rising to the challenge. In 2018–19 our global federation – with national members Australia, Canada, India, Japan, Sweden, the UK and the USA – reached millions of people by delivering services directly to homes, schools and healthcare centres.

To make sure services last long after we leave we focus on building strong water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) systems. This year we continued to work at multiple levels to strengthen government leadership, institutional processes and policies, and community empowerment, and to demonstrate inclusive, sustainable models that governments can scale up.

And for an even bigger impact we influenced others who can multiply our contribution, including governments and global leaders in development, health and the private sector. Scroll down to explore highlights of how we have been igniting lasting change.

Discover our reach

Last year, with our partners, we reached millions of people through our work in communities, schools and healthcare centres, and through our advocacy.

Direct reach

Community reach illustration

​​​​​​​We supported communities to reach the following numbers of people:

  • 385,000 with clean water
  • 453,000 with decent toilets
  • 1,503,000 with good hygiene
School reach numbers illustration

We supported schools to reach the following numbers of people:

  • 206,000 with clean water
  • 182,000 with decent toilets
  • 695,000 with good hygiene
Healthcare numbers illustration

We supported healthcare facilities to reach people for the following numbers of visits:

  • 1,238,000 with clean water
  • 1,080,000 with decent toilets
  • 991,000 with good hygiene


We strengthened local systems

Much of our work focuses on building strong WASH systems at district or municipality level to ensure access lasts and reaches everyone. Last year, we worked in more than 90 districts to support and strengthen government leadership, institutional processes and policies, and community empowerment at a local level.

Campaign_Warm orange

We influenced policies, strategies and standards around the world

Last year we helped secure changes to national policies, strategies or standards in 14 countries to benefit people currently living without clean water, decent toilets or good hygiene.


We advocated globally and regionally

Drawing on our experience within individual countries, at global and regional levels we advocate the importance of WASH. See below for details of our work at the World Health Assembly around cholera.

We count users of the services we provide directly in different ways, according to where we reach them:

• In or near people’s homes – population served by water, sanitation and hygiene facilities.
• Schools – school population plus staff.
• Healthcare facilities – total number of patient visits over one year plus staff.

We count people as having been reached with good hygiene through behaviour change activities when they have been exposed to those activities at least three times in a year.


We work in 34 countries across the world. Click the markers on the map below to explore just some stories from our work last year.

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Our partnerships

Explore our partnership stories

Together with our partners, we have a bigger impact. Here are just six examples of our partnerships with governments, businesses and civil society organisations across the world. Click on a droplet and follow the icon buttons to explore stories of our work with the World Health Organization; H&M Foundation; Government of Australia; Diageo, Gap Inc, Unilever and HSBC; Latter-day Saint Charities; Global Affairs Canada; Anglian Water; and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

Our international partnerships include:

European Commission
World Bank
World Health Organization

Anglian Water
Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation
H&M Foundation
The Helmsley Trust
HSBC Holdings Plc
One Drop Foundation
Players of People’s Postcode Lottery (UK)
Severn Trent Water
Swedish Postcode Lottery
Sydney Water
Thames Water
Yarra Valley Water

UK Department for International Development
Swedish International Development Agency
Japan International Co-operation Agency
The Government of Japan
Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade
Global Affairs Canada
United States Agency for International Development.

Finances and governance

In 2018-19, our global income was £113.3 million.

Sata Traore, Fajigila market, Nafadji, Bamako, Mali
Image: Charlie Bibby/ Financial Times

From 2014–15 to 2018–19 our income grew from £90 million to £113 million.

Bar chart showing global income from 2014 to 2019. In 2014-15 = £90m, in 2015-16 = £94m, in 2016-17 = £97m, in 2017-18 = £102m, in 2019-19 = £113m.

For the year 2018–19, 43% of our income came from individuals, 16% came from major donors and trusts, 16% came from corporate donors and 25% came from institutions and other sources.

A pie chart showing breakdown of sources of global total income in 2018-19. Breakdown described in text.

54% of our spend went to programmes; 4% to policy and campaigns; 25% to fundraising; 12% to governance, finance, IT, people and organisational development; 3% to communications; and 2% to other costs.

A pie chart showing breakdown of global expenditure in 2018-19. Breakdown described in text.

These summary accounts are based on audited accounts for each federation member. Please see each member’s annual report for details.


How we work

Discover how we change lives through our key aims

Work with us

Together we make a bigger difference to more people

Our global strategy

See our federation's approach