Toilet Paper Startup Who Gives A Crap Donates Millions to Global Sanitation Projects

10 July 2020
Toilets, Health, Partnership
WGAC donation announcement

The certified B Corp™, which sells toilet paper and other products made from recycled paper and bamboo, will donate over $3.8 million USD to nonprofits around the world working to build sanitation infrastructure and slow the spread of COVID-19

July 10, 2020 (Los Angeles, Calif)—Today, Who Gives A Crap , the eco-friendly toilet paper company that donates half its profits to nonprofit organizations working to improve access to hygiene, clean water, and basic sanitation in developing countries, announced their largest donation to date. $3.87 million USD ($5.6M AUD) will help fund the work of 6 charities around the world.

This donation, up 700% from last year’s donation alone, is more than double the combined amount of all previous yearly donations since the company’s founding in 2013, bringing the grand total to over $5.7 million US amount ($8.1 million AUD).

Dedicated to making the world a better place, founders Simon Griffiths, Danny Alexander and Jehan Ratnatunga founded Who Gives A Crap when they learned that 2 billion people across the world don't have access to a toilet.

That's roughly 40% of the global population, and results in the deaths of around 297,000 children under five every year from diarrheal diseases--over 800 children per day, or one child every two minutes.

Driven to ensure this doesn’t continue, and that everyone in the world has access to a toilet, Who Gives A Crap donates 50% of their profits to global sanitation charities. Who Gives A Crap has fewer than 100 employees, but the startup’s donations are now rivaling the scale of philanthropy of many major corporations.

“We started with the simple idea to turn an everyday item into a catalyst for change. With the help of our customers, we work to ensure everyone in the world has access to a toilet,” said co-founder Danny Alexander. “Now, there’s a whole community of people who are able to make a difference with their toilet paper. But there’s still a lot of work to be done! We hope this is just the beginning of a new generation of consumer-driven philanthropy. ”

Who Gives A Crap’s donation will support several organizations working around the world: WaterAid Australia, WaterAid America, Lwala Community Alliance, Shining Hope For Communities (SHOFCO), Sanergy, and International Development Enterprises (iDE).

For many of these nonprofits whose operations have been upended by the COVID-19 crisis, this massive donation will bring them back to pre-pandemic operational levels.

The funding will go toward WaterAid’s sanitation projects, like building toilets, advancing disability-inclusion, and providing soap and handwashing stations across Timor-Leste, Cambodia, Papua New Guinea, India, Nicaragua, and Colombia.

“In the current COVID-19 world, we are urgently scaling up our work to help keep the most vulnerable people safe,” said WaterAid Australia’s chief executive Rosie Wheen. “Who Gives A Crap has been a critical partner in progressing our work, and this year’s amazing donation takes that to another level. Their donation will have a substantial impac t on the mission, hel ping us reach hundreds of thousands of vulnerable people. If everyone, everywhere had a place to go to the toilet with dignity and wash their hands with soap and water as often as needed, it would go a long way towards helping to contain and prevent the spread of many diseases, and Who Gives A Crap is helping us get there.”

In addition to preventing deadly diarrheal disease, these sanitation efforts are crucial to stopping the spread of COVID-19: WaterAid specifically will work to increase access to clean water supplies and soap, increase hygiene awareness, improve school handwashing facilities to support the return of children to schools, and improve the availability of clean and hygienic toilets for medical professionals and patients.

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About Who Gives A Crap
Who Gives A Crap was founded by Simon Griffiths, Danny Alexander and Jehan Ratnatunga when they learned that 2.5 billion people live without access to a toilet. Although improving, currently, it’s still a staggering 2 billion. They donate half of their profits from the sale of everyday products (like toilet paper!) to do good globally. The company officially launched in 2012 with a crowdfunding campaign. Simon live streamed himself sitting on a toilet in a draughty warehouse until there were enough pre-orders to start production. Fifty hours and a sore bum later, he’d raised over $50,000. They delivered their first product in March 2013 and have been on a roll ever since, having sold millions of rolls of toilet paper and donated over $5.7 million.

Media contacts:

Emily Haile
Director of Marketing & Engagement, WaterAid
[email protected]