What we do

We work with local partners to help achieve access to potable water and ensure that the local government takes up water quality testing.
WaterAid/ Poulomi Basu

Safe water

In India, over one lakh people die of water-borne diseases annually. The country faces a huge challenge in ensuring safe water supply.

Safe Water

We focus on improving access to water. In India, the government has progressive and decentralised policies and programmes for water supply and security. WaterAid recognises the mandate and the role of the government and facilitates the process of translating vision into action in challenging contexts.

We realise that the key to drinking water security lies with the community. Our approach involves promoting locally-owned and managed drinking water security plans at the community-level. These plans are simple which can be used, monitored and managed by people and local governments.

Key components of our work on drinking water security include:

Participatory water resource management
  • Building capacity of local government and community on the principles, processes and provisions;
  • Mapping of water resources and usage;
  • Water budgeting and allocation;
  • Improving access to water supply by leveraging government resources; and
  • Advocacy for regulations of water use in water stressed areas and protection of groundwater.
Source sustainability measures
  • Rainwater harvesting, groundwater recharge;
  • Alternate water supplies like developing surface water systems; and
  • Promoting complementary use of water source – securing scarce fresh water source for consumption.
Water quality management
  • Water safety plans – prevent contamination before it happens;
  • Treatment of water with appropriate technologies (in arsenic or fluoride endemic areas);
  • Monitoring, surveillance and testing through water quality field test kits; and
  • Advocacy for adequate infrastructure and accountability at district and regional labs.
Operation and maintenance
  • Ensure skills, spares and tools – for regular maintenance and management (mechanics, pump operators, spares bank, tools for regular maintenance and repair);
  • Finance for operation and maintenance, replacement, expansion and modernisation (through village committees or local government based maintenance funds);
  • Monitoring usage to minimise wastage; and
  • Advocacy for decentralised management

WAI promotes safe water handling in households as part of its hygiene messages and if needed, appropriate point of use treatment systems for ensuring safe drinking water.

WaterAid India’s school programme focuses on ensuring safe and adequate drinking water in schools and that the facilities are designed in an accessible manner for young and differently-abled children. Children and school management members are trained as champions to promote water quality and sustainability in school and communities.

Our work in India

We work with government institutions at the district, state and national-levels to inform them of the ground realities

Water fact

2,300 people die every day from water-related diseases.

Clean, safe drinking water is scarce. Yet, we take it for granted and waste it.