UNICEF – supporting hygiene practices in India
Caring for people and the planet is at the heart of our operations and our sustainability work. Our partnership with UNICEF dates from 2007 when we began our support for UNICEF Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) work in India, which aims to improve hygiene practices and access to safe water and sanitation services. In 2020 the effect of COVID-19 highlighted the critical role of the WASH program, as India was the worst affected country after the USA – with over 9 million confirmed cases. UNICEF directed part of its WASH efforts to help respond to the pandemic.
By November 30th, 2020, 3.6 million people across India had been reached with critical WASH supplies (including hygiene items) and services. Special efforts were made to ensure that the UNICEF WASH programme could continue despite COVID. The work focused, for example, on bringing improvements to pre-schools, schools, and health facilities as well to ending open defecation and promoting hygiene practices in rural communities and urban slums. Special efforts were also made towards ensuring water safety and security in more water polluted and drought prone areas. We are very proud of being a UNICEF partner and our role in helping to achieve these encouraging results.