H&M Foundation

Thumbnail WaterAid/Asad Zaidi

The H&M Foundation is working together with WaterAid to reach people with clean water, decent toilets and good hygiene at both a global and local scale.

Our partnership

The H&M Foundation is a non-profit global foundation, privately funded by the Stefan Persson family, founders and main owners of . Since 2013, WaterAid has been working together with the H&M Foundation on a Global Programme for Water, which tackles water, sanitation and hygiene issues worldwide, as well as running several local projects in Bangladesh.

The global programme 

In 2014, the H&M Foundation donated £5.4 million to a three-year programme to bring clean water, decent toilets and good hygiene to schools, reaching more than 250,000 of the world’s poorest students. By working with a wide range of partners, the project helped develop and update national education policies, as well as influencing the global Sustainable Development Goals. 

In 2017, marking the second three-year phase of the global partnership, the H&M Foundation donated another £5.4 million. During this period, there will be a focus on reaching people with sustainable water and sanitation services in their communities, homes, health care facilities and schools in four target countries: Cambodia, Ethiopia, Pakistan and Uganda. 

Local projects

Alongside this global programme, the H&M Foundation and WaterAid have also established two local projects in Bangladesh.

The first is a £3.5 million project, running from 2013-19. It aims to improve the health, safety and dignity of millions of people in Dhaka, by renovating or building public toilets in 30 different locations in the city. 

The second is a £1.4 million project, running from 2016-20. It aims to improve drinking water, toilets and hygiene practices for 10,600 residents in Banglabazar, a low-income community located by the factories on the outskirts of Dhaka.

What our partners say

Lack of access to water, sanitation and hygiene is a huge global issue and a priority for the H&M Foundation. But it’s not something that any single organisation or company can solve – it requires global collaboration by governments, NGOs, civil societies and businesses.
By partnering with WaterAid we have been able to make a real difference to individuals and communities, but also to contribute to the systemic change needed globally and nationally.
Diana Amini - Global Manager of the H&M Foundation

The partnership in practice

ThumbnailWaterAid/Asad Zaidi

In 2015, thanks to funding from the H&M Foundation, new toilets and a water tank were built at Najma’s school in her village in Sindh Province, Pakistan. 

Before that, Najma and her classmates had to go to a washroom 20 minutes away from their school.

“It is better to go to the washroom in school rather than outside,” Najma says. “Our time is saved now.”