The Global Interfaith WASH Alliance (GIWA) is the world’s first initiative that is engaging the planet’s many faiths as allies in efforts to create a world where every human being has access to safe drinking water, improved sanitation and proper hygiene.
GIWA was launched globally at UNICEF headquarters during the United Nations General Assembly Meetings, under the sponsorship of UNICEF, the Governments of the Netherlands and the United States.
GIWA’s Many Initiatives Include:
- WORSHIP FOR WASH: From our Worship for WASH Summits to large-scale public events and beyond, leaders and communities are now joining forces, and joining hands with GIWA to save lives and bring about a healthier, happier, more peaceful world.
- THE SWACHHTA KRANTI (Clean Revolution): BGIWA feels that nothing short of a behaviour change revolution is required in order to ensure healthy, sustainable Water, Sanitation and Hygiene for nearly half of India’s population. Our compelling faith-based Swachhta Kranti (Clean Revolution) campaign has been designed to do just that. Through the inspirational words of beloved faith leaders, populations that had never dreamed of building and using toilets are being motivated to embrace improved sanitation and more. As they do so, they join GIWA in expanding the Swachhta Kranti campaign amongst their friends, neighbours and others through their own endeavours and by participating in GIWA’s grand processions, mass pledges, Sanitation & Hygiene Rallies and more.
- WASH ON WHEELS: Dedicated social workers, volunteers and performers are providing outreach in streets, slums and villages through GIWA’s unique WASH on Wheels programme. WASH on Wheels is a huge mobile educational platform which features videos of foremost faith leaders promoting the use of toilets, as well as street theatre, puppet shows, sanitation walks and more.
- WORLD TOILET COLLEGE: This one-of-a-kind institution is providing students from across India with the skills, tools and knowledge they need in order to realize Swachh Bharat Mission goals. Classes include: Household Sanitation and Hygiene, WASH in Schools, “Sanitation Ambassador” training for communities and outreach workers, Toilet Building 101, Professional Restroom Cleaning, and more.
- WOMEN FOR WASH: GIWA’s Women for WASH Programme is enabling women from villages and slums to become WASH entrepreneurs. Together, they are assembling to build toilets, sell toilets and wage their own local Revolution against pollution, hardship and disease by helping to ensure their neighbours embrace, and have access to toilets, clean water, and more.
- WATER SCHOOL: This recently-launched programme, to be implemented in the Ganga-Himalayas by GIWA in partnership with Swarovski, will train teachers to enable children from the age of eight to learn the principles of sustainable water management, sanitation, and hygiene. Teaching materials will convey related theoretical knowledge through engaging experiments and practical outdoor programs. Children will be encouraged to be ambassadors for the water cause so that they can pass on their knowledge to their families and communities with the aim of achieving important behavioral change. In addition, teacher training sessions will help promote responsible water management by enabling them to give their own WaterSchool classes – supported by specially developed handbooks. In addition, the WaterSchool programme will provide schools with the toilet, handwashing and drinking water facilities they need in order to ensure the health of all children.
- THE PROVISION OF HEALTHY TOILETS AND WATER: GIWA is working with organizations such as India’s Department of Defense Research Organisation (DRDO) to introduce new toilet technologies, such as Bio- Digester toilets, to schools and public places. In such a way, communities can be introduced to new advances in sanitation and all may benefit from improved access to toilets. In addition, GIWA provides a targeted water programme, which includes the provision of bio-sand water filters for schools, as well as other water cleaning technologies, including sanitizing tablets and portable water filters for times of emergency.
- DISASTER RISK REDUCTION AND RECOVERY (DRRR): The Global Interfaith WASH Alliance is currently providing disaster relief services in earthquake-torn Nepal and in flood-stricken Uttarakhand, India. Among our interventions, GIWA has provided, or is providing: Clean water; The rebuilding of WASH-friendly schools and community centers; The building of livelihoods centres, so that disaster-impacted people may be safeguarded from poverty; Emergency evacuation services, Relief camps; Family reunification services; Medical assistance; Emergency aid supplies; Tree plantations to prevent future flooding; Advocacy and education to help prevent or offset future crises; and more.
- POLICY ADVOCACY: GIWA works with leaders and policy makers from across India and around the world to advocate for improved access to safe, healthy and sustainable Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) for all. We also produce informative policy papers and publications that delve deeply into pressing issues, such as sustainable development and the rejuvenation of key water sources, including the Ganga and Yamuna Rivers.