About Us

A registered charity in Singapore, the World Toilet Organization (WTO) is the leading global voice for sanitation - an international non-profit committed towards building a world with clean, safe toilets for everyone, everywhere at all times. Our work span across the globe and can be seen in countries like Cambodia, India, China, Myanmar, Vietnam, South Africa, Australia, Malaysia, and Singapore. To break the taboo on toilets and sanitation, we partnered with the local government to table Singapore's first ever UN resolution which led to the founding of UN World Toilet Day since 2013.

Why Toilets?

We use them every day - at home, school, work, restaurants, shopping malls - yet we seldom talk about them. The silence around the issue of toilets and sanitation has deadly consequences for those living with proper toilets and sanitation. Diarrhoea - a direct consequence of poor sanitation - kill more children in low-income countries every year than AIDS, malaria and measles combined. Diarrhoea remains a major killer but is largely preventable!

Who are affected the most?

2.3 billion people live without access to proper toilets and sanitation. Almost a billion people are forced to pee or poo in the open, i.e. open defecation with disregard to their personal privacy and dignity. This is especially dangerous for women and young girls who are made more vulnerable as a result.

What is our goal?

To end open defecation worldwide by 2030 in accordance to the Sustainable Development Goals set by the United Nations. Plenty has been done, but there is still plenty more to do.

We need your help to achieve this goal!

Our Programmes

Since its inception, WTO has brought together key players from governments, academia, civil society, multilateral agencies and the private sector to explore innovative and sustainable solutions to end the
global sanitation crisis. Our current work revolves around 4 key pillars, namely:

1. Advocate

World Toilet Summit is an annual gathering of the greatest minds in the sanitation sector to share, learn and collaborate with one another to tackle the global sanitation challenges. Since 2001, there has been a total of 15 toilet summits. In 2017, the 16th summit took place in Melbourne, Australia on Nov 20 - 21.

Urgent Run is WTO's global run to call for urgent action to end the sanitation crisis. Communities across the world come together in November for sanitation-themed 'Urgent Run' walks and run events, in the lead-up to UN World Toilet Day on November 19. In 2017, the annual Urgent Run Singapore was held on October 28 at East Coast Park while other countries such as Vietnam, Paris, Bulgaria, Malaysia have also organised their own Urgent Runs to celebrate World Toilet Day!

2. Build

Rainbow School Toilet Program was established with the ultimate aim of inspiring long-term behavioural change for children living in rural areas, such that they may grow up to become future change-makers. In 2016, we started in rural China, where many school toilets still used old, unhygienic dry system toilets. The excreta disposal site is located right behind the toilet building in the open, resulting in the children having to contend with a large number of maggots and flies carrying harmful fecal bacteria.

In 2018, we will bring this project to the children in Cambodia where the rate of open defecation there is relatively highest in Southeast Asia.

3. Educate

World Toilet College is our think-tank initiative where we design hygiene education and spearhead capacity building in the sanitation sector. It takes more than just building toilets to solve the sanitation crisis. Firstly, long-term behavioural change must be nurtured in our users through proper hygiene education. Secondly, toilet maintenance is required to sustain the infrastructure for long-term usage leading to behavioural change. This is also where we empower local sanitation workers with professional skills and uplift the image of social workers.

In 2017, we held classes for municipal officers and sanitation workers from Karnataka, India to train them on solid and liquid waste management. Some of these sanitation workers were from the lower caste, and had never dreamt of flying overseas before. Now that they are given the chance to travel, this has completely changed the status quo and perception of their social identity.

4. Empower

SaniShop is our social enterprise model designed to empower local villagers to solve their own sanitation problems. This is done by training the locals to become masons and sales entrepreneurs to build and sell toilets to their own communities, while earning a livelihood for themselves.

Since 2009, there has been a total of more than 12,000 household toilets built and sold in Cambodia, with over 500 sales entrepreneurs were trained to accomplish this feat. In 2018, we look to expand SaniShop to other provinces in Cambodia.

Back in Singapore, our local programmes include speaking engagements in schools, sanitation roadshows and an upcoming toilet museum exhibition in Science Center in 2018. Not to mention, we are currently planning Urgent Run 2018 in anticipation of UN World Toilet Day 2018!
SUPPORTED CAUSES
  • Education
  • Environment
  • Health
  • Women & Girls
CONTACT US

Jalen Lun

World Toilet Organization Ltd

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