DFID and UNICEF in partnership with the GoB to improve sanitation and hygiene for 30 million people across Bangladesh
Dhaka, January 23, 2007: In a simple ceremony held in the city today, the UK Department for International Development (DFID) and UNICEF signed an agreement to support the Government of Bangladesh in implementing improved sanitation and hygiene programmes to reach 30 million people in 34 of the poorest districts across Bangladesh. Up to 5.1 million people, particularly the poorest, will benefit from year round access to adequate supplies of safe drinking water.
Acting Country Representative of DFID in Bangladesh Ms. Elizabeth Carriere and UNICEF Representative Mr. Louis-Georges Arsenault signed the agreement this morning.
This agreement was signed to support the joint implementation of the Sanitation, Hygiene Education and Water Supply in Bangladesh (SHEWA-B) project by the Government of Bangladesh (GoB)’s Department of Public Health Engineering (DPHE) and UNICEF. For the five year duration of the project from 2007 to 2011, DFID will contribute up to £35 million (Taka 483 crore), UNICEF’s own contribution will be approximately £4.8million while the GoB investment will be around £8.9million.
Speaking at the signing ceremony, the Acting Country Representative of DFID in Bangladesh Ms. Elizabeth Carriere said: “Nearly 100 children in Bangladesh die each day from diarrhoea-related disease caused by poor hygiene and sanitation. DFID is helping 30 million people in the area covered by this programme to get improved sanitation and safe drinking water supplies, and special measures will ensure that the poorest and school children benefit. We are achieving this by working in partnership with experienced organisations such as UNICEF, to provide co-ordinated support to the Government of Bangladesh’s own programmes.”
UNICEF Representative Mr. Louis-George Arsenault said: “I greatly appreciate DFID for making this generous contribution. I am confident that SHEWA-B will chart a way towards achieving the Millennium Development Target 10 of halving the proportion of people without sustainable access to safe drinking water and basic sanitation by 2015 through this expansive DPHE/UNICEF partnership.” Stating that the target not being reached means people’s health and well-being are hindered in many ways, Mr. Arsenault added that lack of clean water, proper hygiene and sanitation contributes to high child and maternal mortality.
Through SHEWA-B around 1.5 million school-children will benefit from safe water delivery and improved sanitation services to 7,500 primary schools, whilst 4.5 million additional children are to gain from hygiene education in their schools.
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