On 3 May 2016, girls wash their hands with running water at the shelter for earthquake-affected people in Portfoviejo, Manabi.

Clean water
for every child

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Thousands of children die every day because they don’t have access to safe water and toilets

They are exposed to deadly diseases because they simply don’t have access to basic, maintained facilities like covered toilets and safe water

Every year, waterborne diseases like diarrhoea, cholera and typhoid claim the lives of millions of children. Water and sanitation-related diseases are one of the biggest causes of death for children under five around the world. Every day, around 5,000 children die from diarrhoea-related causes alone.

Poor sanitation, water and hygiene affect more than just children’s health. Children – particularly girls – often miss out on education, because many schools lack proper toilets and hand washing facilities. Others miss out because they must spend their days making long journeys to collect clean water, rather than going to school.

A group of girls collect water for their families.
Unicef/Richard Nyamanhindi

A young woman is among children and adults filling jerrycans with clean water at a community water point in Ethiopia. Since the Unicef-supported water pump was installed in February, life in their community has changed dramatically. Children previously had to trek through rocky terrain and steep hills that even their donkeys struggled to climb – to get water at a river located three hours away, which kept them out of school. Many of the children also got diarrhoea because the water was dirty. © UNICEF/UN011585/Ayene
A young woman fills up jerrycans with clean water at a Unicef-supported community water point in Ethiopia. Children used to have to trek for three hours through rocky terrain and steep hills to get water from a river, which kept them out of school. Unicef/Ayene
Children carry jugs of water at a camp for earthquake victims © UNICEF/NYHQ2010-2659/LeMoyne
Children carry jugs of water at a camp for earthquake victims. Unicef/LeMoyne
12-year-old Kosalata Banda collects water from the recently installed borehole in the village of Chikosa, Dowa District. © UNICEF/UNI189754/Gilbertson VII Photo
12-year-old Kosalata Banda collects water from the recently installed borehole in the village of Chikosa, Malawi. Unicef/Gilbertson
Children get drinking water from workers in a truck.
Children get drinking water from workers in a truck after the earthquake in Nepal.
A young girl drinks clean water at a water point in Lao. Photo: Unicef/2015/Noorani
A young girl drinks clean water at a water point in Lao. Unicef/Noorani

We’re helping more children access safe water

Our water, sanitation and hygiene teams work in more than 100 countries around the world to keep children safe by providing better water supplies and sanitation facilities in schools and communities, and by promoting safe hygiene practices like hand washing.

In emergencies we provide urgent relief to communities and countries whose water supplies have been disrupted and where there is a threat of disease.

Last year, with your support, we helped nearly 14 million people get access to clean water and we provided more than 11 million people with basic toilets.

 

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