Pakistan is one of the most densely populated countries in the world. Due to this rapid growth in population and urbanisation, as well as prolonged political instability, many people living in the country don’t have access to clean drinking water or a decent toilet. 16 million people living in Pakistan still don’t have access to clean water, and 68 million people still don’t have access to adequate sanitation.
WaterAid started work in Pakistan in 2006, helping communities establish improved water sources, sanitation and hygiene. Pakistan managed to achieve its MDG targets for both water and sanitation, and succeeded in almost halving the number of people practising open defecation from 46 million to 25 million. However, a key challenge in the coming years will be closing the inequality gap between urban and rural populations in terms of access to clean water, decent toilets and hygiene.
Working with the HSBC Water Programme and local partner Health and Nutrition Development Society (HANDS), WaterAid is providing 48 schools in the Sindh Province of Pakistan with access to clean water and sanitation, through installing clean water supplies and giving hygiene education sessions.
Nargis Naeem is a partner of WaterAid Pakistan, and works with local schools to run health and hygiene sessions. This image is taken of her running a session at the Government Girls Primary School in Faqir Surab, Karachi, in the Sindh Province.
So far, the HSBC Water Programme and WaterAid have reached 507,823 people with clean water, and 775,082 with access to sanitation in Pakistan. Thanks to commitment from individuals like Nargis, 762,387 people have been reached with messages on good hygiene. This includes reaching 1,554 schools (143,048 students) with improved WASH facilities, including menstrual hygiene facilities for girls.
Hygiene education is such an important part of WaterAid’s work, as it ensures that projects encourage long term change and create sustainable services. Without hygiene education sessions like the ones run by Nargis, toilets might not be used, water could still be contaminated, food will continue to be polluted, and dignity will be compromised.
Over the past five years, WaterAid and HSBC have worked together to transform lives in six countries: Bangladesh, India, Nepal, Pakistan, Ghana and Nigeria. Together, we have reached 1.65 million people with clean water and 2.5 million people with sanitation and hygiene. Find out more about WaterAid’s work in partnership with HSBC.