The Water & Sanitation Crisis in Bangladesh
Bangladesh has one of the highest population densities in the world, with a population of 160 million living within 57,000 square miles. Of those 160 million people, 13 percent lack safe water and 39 percent lack improved sanitation.
Lack of access to safe water and improved sanitation facilities in rural areas, overcrowded conditions, and a lack of healthy ways of disposing waste in urban centers, all contribute to the water and sanitation crisis in Bangladesh.
Bangladesh is known as the birthplace of microfinance and has seen vibrant and sustained growth of the sector. The result has been enormous impact on financial inclusion of those living in poverty, particularly women. Through programming, Water.org is leveraging the microfinance sector to address the demand for access to safe water and improved sanitation.
Water.org is currently implementing WaterCredit programs in Bangladesh. With support from the IKEA Foundation and Inditex, we are working with six local microfinance institutions to launch and expand WaterCredit. Water.org is also exploring opportunities to partner with additional organizations, both financial and non-financial, to provide alternative water and sanitation solutions.