How water and sanitation drives development

WSUP is focused on meeting Sustainable Development Goal 6, which states that by 2030, everyone will have access to clean water and adequate sanitation.

But improved water and sanitation services underpin almost every other developmental goal: from creating climate change resilience thanks to improved water management, to raising school attendance for teenage girls as a result of better sanitation in schools.


The links between clean water and safe sanitation and health are well-documented. Diarrhoeal diseases are the second leading cause of death in children under five – claiming more lives that measles, malaria and HIV-related illnesses combined.

Outbreaks of disease can be significantly reduced through safe water and improved sanitation and hygiene.


Water, sanitation and hygiene improvements bring immense benefits to women and girls, who primarily bear the responsibility for household water supply and are most affected by poor sanitation.

Access to clean water and safe sanitation contributes to gender equality through its impact on women’s dignity, health, access to education and opportunities for economic empowerment.

SDG 5 Gender equality


Improved WASH services provide a wide range of economic benefits. Improved health, reduced sickness and less time spent collecting water results in more working opportunities.

In addition to providing opportunities by improving health and well-being, WSUP has been instrumental in supporting the private sector to generate jobs through the creation of water and sanitation services.

SDG 8 decent work economic growth


Inequality is becoming more and more pronounced, as densely populated low-income areas grow.

By increasing access to water and sanitation amongst the poorest urban residents, WSUP is helping to address this challenge.

SDG 10 reduced inequalities

Sustainable cities

Poor water and sanitation services in low-income communities are damaging to whole cities, in particular through the pollution that ends up in the environment. This challenge poses a threat to wider public health and compromising economic development.

Through the improvement of services for low-income urban residents, our work contributes to the broader development and sustainability of cities.

SDG 11 sustainable cities and communities