WaterAid receives collaboration award for efforts towards ending period poverty

Posted by
Eloise Reader
18 November 2019
Sweden, Periods, Gender
WaterAid/ Eliza Powell

WaterAid is a recipient of the 2019 ‘Power, Together’ award, which recognises the international charity’s commitment to end period poverty.  

Martina Nee, Equality and Inclusion Adviser at WaterAid Sweden accepted the award on behalf of WaterAid at the Women Leaders Global Forum in Iceland on the 18 November 2019. 

The award champions initiatives that increase the number and power of women leaders. It acknowledges outstanding programmes in which people have joined forces for great change.  

The 2019 Reykjavík Global Forum is recognising WaterAid’s role in the campaign to end period poverty, by working locally, nationally and internationally to challenge the taboos around periods, improve understanding on good menstrual hygiene management, and help women and girls everywhere have access to clean water and decent toilets.  

Martina Nee, Equality and Inclusion Adviser at WaterAid Sweden said: 

“Access to clean water, decent toilets and good hygiene is vital if we are to battle the discrimination menstruating women face. We need to challenge norms and increase knowledge around menstruation on all levels. We really need to work together, and we are proud that our multi-sectoral approach is recognised and awarded.” 

The international charity has worked to get people talking openly about periods, running campaigns such as #PeriodProud and #IfMenHadPeriods. WaterAid has also contributed to research on improving menstrual hygiene for women and girls in lower and middle-income countries and has provide guidance on how to make public and institutional toilets female friendly. 

Louisa Gosling, WaterAid’s Quality Programmes Manager, said:  

“Around a quarter of the world’s population have their periods every month. Yet menstruation remains a taboo subject and a low political priority in many countries, meaning millions of women and girls are denied access to knowledge around menstrual hygiene management as well as vital services such as clean water and decent toilets.  

“WaterAid is committed to removing the stigma that surround periods. Most of all, we need to ensure that every women and girl has access to water, safe toilets and somewhere to wash by 2030.” 

WaterAid’s work around the world includes providing toilets, handwashing facilities and menstrual hygiene education in schools and communities. Without these, many girls drop out of school when reaching adolescence. 


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For more information, please contact:  

Laura Crowley, PR manager, [email protected]  or
+44 (0)207 793 4965.  

Or call our after-hours press line on +44 (0)7887 521 552 or email [email protected]

Notes to Editors:  


WaterAid is working to make clean water, decent toilets and good hygiene normal for everyone, everywhere within a generation. The international not-for-profit organisation works in 28 countries to change the lives of the poorest and most marginalised people. Since 1981, WaterAid has reached 26.4 million people with clean water and 26.3 million people with decent toilets. For more information, visit www.wateraid.org/uk, follow @WaterAid or @WaterAidPress on Twitter, or find WaterAid UK on Facebook at www.facebook.com/wateraid.

  • 785 million people in the world – one in ten – do not have clean water close to home.[1]
  • 2 billion people in the world – almost one in four – do not have a decent toilet of their own.[2]
  • Around 310,000 children under five die every year from diarrhoeal diseases caused by poor water and sanitation. That's almost 800 children a day, or one child every two minutes.[3]
  • Every £1 invested in water and toilets returns an average of £4 in increased productivity.[4]
  • Just £15 can provide one person with clean water.[5]

[1] WHO/UNICEF Joint Monitoring Programme (JMP) Progress on drinking water, sanitation and hygiene: 2017 update and SDG Baselines

[2] WHO/UNICEF Joint Monitoring Programme (JMP) Progress on drinking water, sanitation and hygiene: 2017 update and SDG Baselines

[3] Prüss-Ustün et al. (2014) and The Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (2018)

[4] World Health organization (2012) Global costs and benefits of drinking-water supply and sanitation interventions to reach the MDG target and universal coverage

[5] www.wateraid.org