School-based water and sanitation programs

Photo credit: Ryan Cronk

Photos by Ryan Cronk

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GGG_india_flagSustainability and scalability of school-based water and sanitation programs in India

Safe drinking water and adequate hygiene and sanitation have a major impact on school attendance and achievement.

In order to achieve universal access to education as a right for all children, clean water and adequate sanitation are a critical part of the school environment.  Access to clean water and sanitation in schools provides children the opportunity to stay healthy and learn the importance of hygiene and sanitation at an early age. Students lose days at school because of preventable gastrointestinal infections, and it is thought that adolescent girls drop out of school when they reach puberty because sanitation facilities do not provide privacy and cleanliness during menstruation.

The Michael and Susan Dell Foundation has several water and sanitation pilots from social enterprises in Indian schools in several Indian states. The Water Institute at UNC is analyzing the functionality and self-financing of water dispenser and portable toilets, and their potential scaling-up in additional schools and surrounding communities. Read More

This project will result in recommendations for enhancing delivery of safe water and sanitation in Indian schools that contributes to health and educational performance. Since communities around the schools will also be able to purchase safe water from the school-based water dispensers, The Water Institute at UNC will explore whether the community can contribute to financial self-sufficiency for the drinking water dispenser pilot sites at schools. If the water and sanitation pilots are assessed to be functional and self-financing, The Water Institute at UNC will develop plans for scaling-up the water dispensers and portable toilets in additional Indians schools while maintaining their quality and performance.

Project Team


Sponsored by: Michael & Susan Dell Foundation

Total funding: $357,077


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