World Toilet Day
Project Manager – Outreach & Education
Hamilton Water, Customer Service & Community Outreach
Email [email protected]
- 2.4 billion people lack access to basic sanitation
- 4.5 billion people live without a household toilet
- 892 million people practice open defecation
- 80% of wastewater flows back into the ecosystem untreated
- 1,600 children die per day from diseases that are preventable through clean toilets, safe water and good hygiene
World Toilet Day is a day created by the United Nations General Assembly to bring worldwide sanitation issues to light. Held on November 19th each year, this day focuses on raising awareness and inspiring action to help tackle the issue that 2.4 billion people worldwide face who lack access to basic sanitation facilities such as toilets and latrines.
For these people, basic sanitation is often non-existent and without a toilet or latrine, open defecation is a common practice. People are forced to relieve themselves outside in fields, bushes, open water, forests or in other open spaces. This practice can lead to severe consequences, especially for women and girls that practice open defecation under the cover of darkness as they are often vulnerable to physical attacks. The countries where open defecation is widely practiced are the same countries with the highest rates of child deaths and malnutrition. Access to a functioning toilet not only has a positive impact on public health, human dignity and personal safety, but also helps stop spread of many deadly diseases.
Since 2018, Hamilton Water has been able to collect $68,000 in donations from local organizations for Water for People Canada. These donations go directly to improving access to clean water and basic sanitation in areas around the world that are in need. Thank you to our generous donors who helped raise over $8,400 in 2022:
- R.V. Anderson Associates Limited
- Eramosa Engineering Inc.
- SNF Canada Ltd.
- Ainley Group
- Hamilton and District Heavy Construction Association (HAND)
What we are doing
This year, World Toilet Day will be celebrated by almost 100 students at an event at the Hamilton Musuem of Steam and Technology along with almost 1000 students taking part online.
At the event, grade 7 and 8 students will rotate through educational activities to learn about World Toilet Day, water/wastewater treatment and the long history of water in Hamilton. Students taking part online will be able to enter a contest to win a new hydration station for their school! On November 19th, Hamilton Water will announce the winner of our contest with the runner-ups taking home prize packs!
The event provides a direct link to the City of Hamilton’s own efforts to improve wastewater quality and our harbour through the Hamilton’s Clean Harbour Program as well it’s an opportunity for youth to raise funds to support for “Water for People – Canada”, a charity dedicated to water and sanitation initiatives globally.
What you can do
Promote good practices
Chances are, if you are reading this, you have access to a safe water source and toilets to use freely, so you can support this global initiative right in your own City by protecting our valuable infrastructure. Ensure that only pee, poo and paper are flushed down the toilet and educate others on how chemicals and anything else that is flushed down the toilet can hurt the environment.
Talk about it
Open up the conversation and break taboos, let’s talk about toilets! This is something that many Canadians take for granted. Create awareness about this global crisis and inspire others to take action towards making toilets accessible for everyone.
With your financial contribution, you can help work towards the United Nations Sustainable Development Goal #6 that aims to provide adequate sanitation for all and cut the amount of untreated wastewater in half by 2030. Graciously donate to reputable charities that are working towards sanitation as global development priority. According to the UN, the provision of proper sanitation, along with safe water and good hygiene could prevent up to 842,000 deaths each year.
Participate in World Toilet Day
Taking part in World Toilet Day is easy. Just send your class information to [email protected] and you will receive an electronic activity package designed to increase your students’ knowledge of their water, wastewater and related worldwide issues. Along with the package you will also receive a class challenge that you can complete for a chance to win a water bottle and other cool swag for each of your students! Show our community that we can make a difference by signing up today.
Hamilton Water aims to make a difference every World Toilet Day by raising awareness by educating Hamilton students on water and sanitation issues and by collecting donations from generous local organizations. Every dollar that is raised goes directly to Water for People Canada, a charity working in struggling communities around the world to increase lasting access to clean water and sanitation.
Register your class by November 1 to receive the electronic activity package containing a lesson plan, activities and other resources designed to teach your students about:
- The importance of clean water and sanitation (like toilets, sewers and wastewater treatment)
- Where our wastewater goes and how it is treated in Hamilton
- Global issues caused by lack of access to proper toilets and infrastructure
For more information or to register, please email [email protected]. When registering, please include your name, school, grade and number of students participating.