For Every Child, Clean Water

A conceptual framework for resource mobilization

School girls pumping water
UNICEF Nepal/2015/CSKarki


Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) is at the centre of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) agenda with a distinct sector Goal (SDG 6) and its corresponding targets 6.1 and 6.2 envisaging universal and equitable access to safe drinking water, sanitation and hygiene by 2030.

Achievement of SDG targets 6.1 and 6.2 will contribute to a number of other goals including those related to nutrition, health, education, poverty and economic growth, urban services, gender equality, resilience and climate change.

In the last 25 years, Nepal has made significant progress in expanding the coverage of improved water supply, sanitation and hygiene practices. According to the 2016 Nepal Demographic and Health Survey (NDHS), 95 per cent of households are using improved drinking water.

However, there is still a lot to be done for access to improved sanitation. It was then the Government of Nepal prioritized sanitation and hygiene by creating an enabling policy environment, inclusive planning, decentralized service delivery arrangement and transforming sanitation promotion into a social movement.

As a result, access to improved sanitation increased dramatically from 40 per cent in 2011 to 65 per cent in 2016, and 45 out of 75 districts have achieved Open Defecation free (ODF) status by end of 2017 setting a remarkable precedent for South Asian countries. Drinking water functionality and its quality remain priority concerns now. Only 25 per cent of the water supply systems function properly, 36 per cent require minor repairs and 39 per cent require either major repairs, rehabilitation or reconstruction.

The data available for access to WASH services in schools and health facilities, for instance, seems very impressive with 78 per cent of schools and 81 per cent of health facilities having a water supply and 82 per cent  of schools and health facilities having a toilet. However, comprehensive data on functionality is not available, a significant proportion of these services are non-operational

UNICEF Nepal WASH Programme cover page
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