Water, Sanitation & Hygiene

Photo: Lys Arango for Action Against Hunger, Iraq

Every day 1,000 children die from illnesses like diarrhea, dysentery, and cholera caused by dirty water and unhygienic living conditions. We can’t fight malnutrition without tackling the waterborne diseases that contribute to it. As part of our integrated approach to fighting hunger, we bring safe water, sanitation, and hygiene services to communities in need all over the world.

► Sign up to help bring clean water to communities around the world.

What We Do

In 2017, Action Against Hunger's Water, Sanitation & Hygiene programs reached 8.9 million people around the world.

Provide Access to Safe Water

During emergencies, we truck water into affected areas and install storage tanks and reservoirs. Where water is scarce or unsafe, we drill and decontaminate wells, install hand-pumps, protect natural springs, tap aquifers, rehabilitate damaged infrastructure, and pipe water into hard-to-reach villages and health centers.

Promote Sanitation & Hygiene

To prevent outbreaks of disease during a crisis, our teams distribute hygiene kits and build latrines and hand-washing stations. In communities at risk, we construct water filters made from basic materials and teach healthy practices like hand-washing, cooking with clean utensils, and drawing water from protected sources.

Ensure Lasting Change

Our commitment to community participation ensures long-term capacity: we train community-based water committees to manage their water and sanitation infrastructure themselves, and organize village health teams to model good sanitation and hygiene practices for their communities long after we leave an area.

► Sign up to help provide clean water and sanitation infrastructure to families in need.

Water Facts

  • Nearly two billion people worldwide drink unsafe water.
  • One billion people lack access to improved sanitation.
  • More than 5% of all child deaths can be prevented with safe water and sanitation.
  • But there has been tremendous progress. Between 1990 and 2012, 2.3 billion people gained access to an improved drinking water source. 

Action Against Hunger is the world’s hunger specialist and leader in a global movement that aims to end life-threatening hunger for good within our lifetimes. For 40 years, the humanitarian and development organization has been on the front lines, treating and preventing hunger across nearly 50 countries. It served more than 21 million people in 2018 alone.