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What is WASH?
WASH stands for Water, Sanitation and Hygiene.
Whilst each of these issues has its own field of work, the success of each is dependent on the others. For example, without toilets, water sources become contaminated; without clean water, basic hygiene practices are not possible (UNICEF)
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The global WASH crisis
There are 663 million people in the world without safe water and 2.5 billion with no access to adequate sanitation.
India has the most people in the world (77 million) without improved access to safe water (WaterAid, 2016).
In Nepal, 2.3 million people (or 1 in every 10) have no access to safe water.
770 million people in India have no access to improved sanitation, and 564 million people practice open defecation. In Nepal, more than half the population live without adequate sanitation and regularly defecate in the open.
In India, 140,000 children die every year from diarrhoea caused by unsafe water and poor sanitation.
In Nepal's 2015 earthquake, 14 of 75 districts were affected. Along with human casualties and damage to roads and buildings, WASH infrastructure was damaged.
In India, around 46 per cent of all children below the age of three are too small for their age and 47 per cent are underweight.
Leave No One Behind
The Millennium Development Goals set to halve the number of people without access to water and sanitation over 15 years. Despite making progress, one in 10 people still have no access to safe water. Of these people, the poorest and most marginalised suffer most.
FRANK Water focuses on groups cut off from society by geography, poverty or caste. We include 100% of every community in our work, so that people take ownership over the water system that they’ve helped design and develop. In particular, we focus on the role of women and girls in communities as well as elderly and disabled people who are further marginalised by age, gender or health.
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Our programmes are diverse and solutions depend on multiple factors including how the water is contaminated, where the source is, what the terrain is like etc. For some villages, we implement gravity fed systems where water runs down from a source at the top of the hill into a village where it’s stored and used. For others, we install rainwater harvesting units that capture and filter rainfall for household use.
We work on a small scale and use our research to help communities leverage more funds from local and national government.
We conduct our own research, work with external consultants who evaluate our programmes and create partnerships to build knowledge and develop proposals for action.
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We partner with organisations that local people trust to help them build their own water systems, access funding from the Indian government to build toilets and learn more about hygiene and health.
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