By expanding their partnership model to new geographies, World Vision commits to reaching one new person every ten seconds with clean water and sanitation in or before 2020, directly impacting 13 million people. This scales up World Visions 2011 commitment to provide water, sanitation, and hygiene solutions for 6.6 million people across ten African countries (Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Malawi, Mali, Mozambique, Niger, Rwanda, Uganda, Zambia) by 2015. This new commitment will continue programming in these countries and will also include 14 additional African countries, as well as countries in Latin America, the Middle East, and Asia, for a total of 36 countries.
World Vision is currently the largest nongovernmental provider of clean drinking water, reaching one new person every 30 seconds. In order to achieve its goal of reaching one person every ten seconds, World Vision will: drill and rehabilitate wells; install pumps, including solar powered mechanized systems; develop and train community Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) committees; and build water collection and sanitation systems for schools and health clinics.
World Vision will form a WASH committee in each of the communities in which they work, with approximately 20,000 committees formed as a result of this commitment. These committees are typically composed of 7-12 community members with at least one of the participants being a woman. They meet roughly once per month and are responsible for setting bylaws for the water point, monitoring its use and maintenance, and creating a finance mechanism to cover repairs. The water points may include traditional boreholes with a hand pump, mechanized boreholes with solar power, protected springs, and rainwater harvesting. As women bear the burden of collecting water, their participation in the WASH committee is crucial for the success of the water point. WASH committees are often the first chance a woman has to hold a leadership role in her community.
In addition, World Vision will provide separate latrines in schools for girls and work with the schools to address menstrual hygiene. Furthermore, World Vision will work to further develop women leaders within their staff. World Visions partners are key to the execution and scaling of this commitment. For example, Grundfos mechanized solar systems will account for two million people reached by 2020, P&Gs water purification packets will enable World Vision to reach one million people each year, Kohler will provide point-of-use filters in India, and Water4 will provide hand drilled wells that will enable World Vision to reach one million people by 2020. In addition, the University of North Carolina (UNC) will conduct additional monitoring and evaluation to enable further improvements in sustainability.
World Vision will work with their local WASH staff and country directors to create plans for scaling up water and sanitation efforts in each of the 36 countries that are part of this commitment. This will enable measurement of progress towards the goal to reach one new person with clean water every ten seconds by 2020. World Vision currently employs more than 500 water and sanitation professionals, the vast majority of which are local staff, and will hire 500 new local water and sanitation professionals as part of this effort. Partnerships with Drexel University and Desert Research Institute will build capacity for these staff. A 2013 study by the UNC Water Institute, funded by the Conrad N Hilton Foundation, showed that World Vision water points continued to function at high levels (80%) for decades due to the existence of water committees and charging a small affordable fee for the water so there was money for repairs.
World Vision aligns with local governments, usually the size of a district or county, to identify the schools and health clinics which will be reached. World Vision currently reaches, on average, four new schools every day with clean water and improved hygiene and sanitation. Partnerships with Coca-Cola and Sesame Workshop will help expand this effort in schools.
In the cases of fragile states such as Syria, World Vision will focus on providing WASH in refugee camps. In the emergency context such as Nepal, World Vision is focused on rehabilitation of WASH in the geographies where they have been working. This includes reaching more than 130,000 people in Nepal through the work of 200 local staff.
This approach has been refined over the last five years and has significantly scaled up World Visions reach from 200,000 beneficiaries a year to more than 1.6 million in 2014. The specific number of direct beneficiaries reached by this commitment will be at least 2 million in 2016, 2.3 million in 2017, 2.6 million in 2018, 2.9 million in 2019, and 3.2 million in 2020.
In addition, World Vision is working with the University of North Carolina Water Institute to establish the largest monitoring and evaluation effort ever undertaken for a rural African water implementation program.
Improving access to water and sanitation is critical in the developing world. Every day, according to the World Health Organization (WHO), nearly 1,000 children under five years old die from diarrhea caused by contaminated water, poor sanitation, and improper hygiene.
Worldwide, 663 million people lack access to an improved drinking water source, with more than 80 percent of them living in rural areas. A report compiled by UNICEF and WHO in 2015 found that 2.4 billion people still lack improved sanitation facilities.
When communities have reliable access to clean water, it transforms virtually every aspect of their lives. For example, providing clean water in communities has a dramatic impact on the lives of girls and women since they are disproportionately impacted by the global water crisis. Specifically, women and girls are the primary water gatherers as well as the caregivers when children fall sick from waterborne illnesses. In addition, children lead healthier lives and child mortality rates dramatically decrease due to a decline in diseases. Children are also able to attend school more regularly and have greater opportunity to succeed since they no longer have to spend their days fetching water or staying home due to water-related illnesses. Parents, especially mothers, are better able to provide and care for their children without the long, difficult, and often multiple treks to get water each day.