WaterAid is beginning the second phase of its global partnership with the H&M Foundation which aims to provide safe water, and increased sanitation and hygiene in some of the world’s poorest communities. The program is a continuation of the partnership first started in 2014.

In the second phase of WaterAid’s partnership with the H&M Foundation, the project will be broadened to take a more holistic approach to ensuring sustainable access to safe water, sanitation and hygiene for people in their communities, their homes, healthcare facilities and in schools.

The goal of this global program is to improve the wellbeing and living conditions of some of the world’s poorest people. The program focuses on sustainability by targeting the root causes of people’s poor access to safe water, sanitation and hygiene.

At the local level, the program will target four countries; Cambodia, Ethiopia, Pakistan and Uganda and aims to reach 150,000 people with safe water and sanitation.

By drawing on best practices, case studies and lessons learned from the work in these countries, WaterAid will seek to further the sustainability agenda globally through advocacy and influencing of key stakeholders on national and global levels for sustainable water, sanitation and hygiene services.

WaterAid and the H&M Foundation first partnered in 2014 on a 60 million SEK (9.2 million AUD) three-year program to bring transformational change to more than 250,000 students around the world.

The program also engaged a wide range of partners and helped influence and update national education policies in the program countries, as well as the global United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.

Now in its second phase, the foundation will donate another 60 million SEK (9.2 million AUD) for the next-three year program 2017-2020.

Rosie Wheen, Chief Executive of WaterAid Australia, said about the partnership, “Every day 900 children under the age of five die from diarrhoea caused by dirty water and poor sanitation. With this generous funding from H&M Foundation we will be able to transform the lives of some of the world’s poorest people by improving their wellbeing and living conditions – not only today but tomorrow and for many years to come.

“The program will demonstrate how targeted efforts contribute to achieving a much bigger goal – safe water, decent toilets and improved hygiene for everyone, everywhere.”

Diana Amini, Global Manager of the H&M Foundation, said, ”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”.

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