Improving access to basic hygiene and sanitation
Cleaner, safer toilets with Domestos and UNICEF
Over one third of the world’s population don’t have access to a basic toilet, which is something that most of us take for granted. Lack of safe drinking water and poor sanitation and hygiene cause millions of preventable deaths each year, particularly among children.
Since 2014, Domestos has been working with UNICEF to help change the lives of people living without basic hygiene and sanitation. So far we’ve helped 16.5 million people gain improved access to a toilet.
Australians and New Zealanders are growing increasingly aware of the positive difference brands can make to social and environmental issues and also the difference they themselves can make through their everyday shopping choices.
In 2018 the Domestos UNICEF partnership tightened its focus to India, working across the country to help people without toilets get access to one.
Improving access to these basic needs is essential to lifting people out of poverty. The health and hygiene pillar of our Unilever Sustainable Living Plan contributes to a number of the UN’s Global Goals for Sustainable Development and when we added this target to the Unilever Sustainable Living Plan in 2014, we became the first company to make a commitment to improving sanitation on this scale.
Locally, Domestos first joined forces with UNICEF Australia in 2015 to help raise awareness of the global sanitation crisis and contribute directly to UNICEF’s global sanitation programs. The campaign, launched to mark World Toilet Day, encourages Aussies and Kiwis to “buy a bottle, help change a life” and has helped provide access to sanitation for over 169,000 people, at the same time driving growth for our Domestos brand.
In 2016 we continued our campaign in Australia to raise awareness of the global sanitation crisis and the particular impact it is having on women. One in three women do not have access to a toilet and are forced to go out in the open. Not only can this lead to disease but it also makes them vulnerable to harassment and assault and even affects school attendance - contributing to the cycle of inequality and poverty for women in developing countries.
To help Australians understand the experiences of these women, Domestos installed a ‘See-Through Loo’ on iconic Bondi Beach, giving people a unique glimpse into what it feels like to go to the toilet with everyone watching. The campaign highlighted the urgent need to improve sanitation and encouraged Aussies to contribute directly to Domestos and UNICEF’s sanitation programs around the world.
As Krstina Nicolai, Brand Manager Domestos explains, “Having access to clean, safe, sanitation and hygiene is something we often take for granted. The Domestos See-Through Loo helped to give people that ‘aha’ moment of what it’s like to feel exposed and vulnerable - an experience which is a reality for many women throughout the world.”
Find out more about how our sustainable living brands are making a difference.