Kingdom of eSwatini
1.1 million

Working with the government to respond to COVID-19 in eSwatini. We’re running a hygiene behaviour change campaign, installing 20 handwashing facilities in health centres and public spaces, rehabilitating 17 boreholes to increase water supply in rural areas, and supporting 500 women to make soap. 

Our global response to COVID-19

Surrounded on three sides by South Africa and bordering Mozambique to the east, the Kingdom of eSwatini (formerly Swaziland) is a small country with a population of around 1.1 million people. With its mountains, valleys, savannah and jungle, four distinct climates shape people’s lives.

One in three people do not have clean water and more than a third have nowhere to go to the toilet, which has a big impact on health and national life expectancy.

The Kingdom of eSwatini also has the world's highest prevalence of HIV/AIDS – almost one in three people aged between 15 and 49 live with HIV. They are extremely vulnerable to diarrhoeal diseases caused by a lack of toilets and hygiene, and need clean water for their medication to be effective.

people don't have clean water.

That's 339,312 people in total.

 people don't have a decent toilet.

That's more than a third of the population.

children under five die a year from diarrhoea.

Caused by dirty water and poor toilets.

What does WaterAid do in the Kingdom of eSwatini?

In collaboration with a local partner, Nazarene Compassionate Services, we’re helping rural communities to become resilient to the effects of climate change – especially drought.

We collaborate with local communities to build and run water kiosks and their own toilets, with training and building materials. We’re also working with the government to make sure there are national guidelines in place for supplying rural water. All of these things will ensure that the systems created are sustainable, long after our project has ended, so that everyone in the country will have access to clean water, decent toilets and good hygiene.

A decent toilet at school, a world of opportunity

WaterAid/Nyani Quarmyne/ Panos

Lindiwe is the head teacher at a high school in Lubombo Province, where she’s worked since 2014. When she first started, she noticed that many girls often missed school because they didn’t have the right things to manage their periods. What’s more, there were no decent toilets or clean water, which made the students sick with diarrhoea. Not having basic things like taps and toilets were limiting the education, hopes and life chances of the students of Lindiwe's school.

WaterAid supported local partner Nazarene Compassionate Services to build a new block of latrines at Lindiwe’s school, complete with taps and a room specially for girls to manage their periods (known as a menstrual hygiene management room).

“The pipe and toilets helped because now the students know they must wash their hands after using the toilet, so health wise it's educational. Cases of diarrhoea have also reduced.”

Far reaching effects

With better health and more time in education, some of the girls from Lindiwe's school have gone on to college. It’s shown the other students that high school isn't the end of childhood - there's a chance for further education and hope for a better future.

WaterAid/Nyani Quarmyne/Panos

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