785 million people around the world still don’t have access to water close to home. That’s 1 in 10 people. 

Without clean water, people are denied access to opportunities that should be open to everyone, everywhere. 

Whole communities are held back while others thrive, simply because they don’t have access to clean water.

This is a global water, sanitation and hygiene crisis. In 2015, world leaders committed to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals by 2030. Goal 6 focuses on water and sanitation – but some countries are not years, but centuries behind reaching this target.

The global water crisis stops people from having an equal chance to be healthy, educated and financially secure.

Water and 

Millions of people worldwide don't have access to clean water and soap, the first line of defence against the spread of diseases like COVID-19.

WaterAid/ Guilhem Alandry

Water and 

Collecting water every day leaves little time for school, and drinking dirty water often makes children too ill to attend.

WaterAid/ Ernest Randriarimalala

Water and 

Clean water allows people to focus on earning an income instead of collecting dirty water which can make them or their family fall sick.

WaterAid/ Ernest Randriarimalala

Why don't people just move closer to water (or boil it)? 

Open sources of water usually aren’t safe. They’re often shared with animals, and contaminated with waterborne diseases like cholera.

They're also unreliable, drying up or running out, often because of climate change. A community cannot move every time this happens.

Boiling water doesn’t get rid of particles of dirt and burning a constant supply of fuel can be very difficult, expensive and bad for health and the environment. 

I collect water from the river, it's far away.

I know it's dirty water but where do I collect clean water from?
Josefina, 12 from Mozambique

What does WaterAid do to fix this?

We have reached over 27 million people with clean water around the world.

But there are still millions of people who face the dangers of drinking water every day, and the impact of climate change is making things worse. This shouldn’t be normal. But we are determined to keep working until everyone, everywhere has access to clean water.

Let Brian Blessed tell you more...

What can I do?

Help us inspire change through art

We're calling on artists to produce eye-catching artwork that will convince world leaders to double investment in clean water and hygiene.

WaterAid/Behailu Shiferaw

Read Beneath the Surface: The State of the World's Water 2019

Globally we use six times as much water today as we did 100 years ago. Consumer demands damage water access for the poorest people.

WaterAid/Genaye Eshetu

Walk for Water

This March, challenge yourself to walk 4, 8 or 12km every day and help make clean water normal for everyone, everywhere.

Two women walking and the Walk for Water logo.