Water, Sanitation and Hygiene

Overview: Water, Sanitation and Hygiene

Improved drinking water sources

Sanitation and Hygiene

School WASH

Communication for Development


Overview: Water, Sanitation and Hygiene

UNICEF Eritrea/2014/Pirozzi
© UNICEF Eritrea/2014/Pirozzi

UNICEF’s partnership with the Government of the State of Eritrea in Water, Sanitation and Hygiene contributes to the achievement of Millennium Development Goal (MDG) 7 target 10 on improved drinking water and sanitation. It aims to increase improved and safe access to WASH services and practices, focusing on vulnerable groups including people in drought-prone areas. The programme focuses on improved drinking water supply, sanitation and hygiene and WASH in schools.

The main implementing partners are the Ministry of Land, Water and Environment (Water Resource Department); Ministry of Education; and the Ministry of Health.

Fast facts

Despite working hard Eritrea has made only “moderate progress” in achievement of the MDG drinking water target with 58% of the total population having access to an improved drinking water source (JMP 2015). The Government of Eritrea with UNICEF’s support continues to work to meet and surpass the MDG drinking water target of 73% as the country moves forward with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) adopted by the international community.

Similarly, with only 16% of the rural population with access to an improved sanitary facility (UNICEF/MoH 2011), Eritrea has made limited progress in achievement of the MDG sanitation target of 54% of the population having access to improved latrines. The adoption of the Community Led Total Sanitation (CLTS) approach to community sanitation has resulted in communities moving away from the practice of open defecation and towards safe hygiene. This approach is accelerating progress towards the MDG sanitation targets and will continue on as the country plans for the SDGs.

Diarrhoeal disease is one of the leading causes of mortality among children under 5 years of age, and morbidity among the general population (MoH, 2007). This is largely attributable to lack of access to safe drinking water, poor sanitation and hygiene practices.

UNICEF and its partners are working to increase coverage and sustain progress made in the delivery of water, sanitation and hygiene services.



 Email this article

unite for children