The Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 6, as defined by the UN, envisions “Universal, sustainable, and equitable access to safe drinking water, sanitation and hygiene, as well as the elimination of open defecation by 2030, paying special attention to the needs of women and girls and those in vulnerable situations.

It enforces the unfortunate reality that girls, women and the underprivileged individuals are worst affected by poor WASH. Additionally, these groups have the lowest representation in the initiatives designed for their welfare. A World Bank evaluation of 122 projects found that water projects that included women were 6-7 times more effective than those that did not. Yet, women make up less than 17% of the water, sanitation, and hygiene labour force.

Water For People India and our partners firmly believe that universal access to WASH is possible only through an all-inclusive approach.

Water For People India has committed to “Leaving No One Behind” in attaining the SDGs through our Everyone Forever model.

We educate boys and men in WASH priorities, outdated social norms, and the need to undo specific forms of exclusion, inequalities, and power imbalances. Our programs have a strong emphasis on the role of women in the development process. Our efforts to improve their access to toilets at home directly contribute to women’s safety and dignity. We are also striving to create a robust and sustainable WASH infrastructure by working with the most excluded and vulnerable population.

Approximately 80% of our Water User Committee members are women. This involvement in the planning, operation, and maintenance of water services leads them to take on additional leadership roles. In every community where we work, women and water are inseparable.
Likewise, mahadalit, minority and low-income communities are also involved in the site selection and other initiatives to ensure equitable access to drinking water. By defining the priority for the vulnerable and excluded we can ensure that all have access to safe and reliable WASH services.

Promoting Equity and Inclusion in Community and Public Institutions

Latrines built through PoP and Subsidy Linkage

Community toilets with separate enclosures and change room for migrated slum-dwellers

Climate resilient, inclusive water facilities for the excluded and vulnerable populations

Encouraging women participation in decision making through Water User Committees

Encouraging women entrepreneurs to deliver water services

Menstrual hygiene facilities in schools

Technological solutions towards equity – sloping handwashing stations and height wise urinals

Encouraging girl leadership in schools through representation in child cabinets