accessibility & help

Water and sanitation

More than one in six people worldwide lack access to safe water and over 2.5 billion – including almost one billion children – live without even basic sanitation (UN-Water).

Unsafe water facilities and unhealthy hygiene practices contribute to the spread of infections which cause diarrhoea, dysentery and other health problems. Globally, every 20 seconds a child dies as a result of poor sanitation (UN-Water).

Red Cross support

The British Red Cross is supporting a water and sanitation programme in Zimbabwe, where poor access to safe drinking water and sanitation facilities causes major health problems.

Thanks to your support of our Clean Start Appeal, we are also helping communities in Kenya and Bangladesh gain access to clean water and toilets. 

Meanwhile, our mass sanitation emergency response unit is ready to respond to overseas emergencies where water can become contaminated and have a negative impact on people's health. 

Our teams have the expertise and equipment to reduce the spread of disease after a disaster, which is key to saving lives.  

Our water and sanitation programmes

Children playing in water.

Clean Start Appeal

Find out how our Clean Start Appeal is helping people in Kenya and Bangladesh gain access to clean water and better sanitation.

Women using community water pump

Water and sanitation in Zimbabwe

The Red Cross is improving access to water and tackling poor sanitation in Zimbabwe by uniting communities and promoting change.


News about water and sanitation

The Red Cross is helping people to recover from Cyclone Winston in Fiji.

A one-of-a-kind Land Rover Defender sold for £400,000 at a charity auction at Bonhams last night. Half the funds raised will go towards a Red Cross community project in Nepal.

Millions of pounds raised by the public will bring safe water and better sanitation to 380,000 people in Kenya and Bangladesh.