Submitted by LIXIL
LIXIL marks the first anniversary of Make a Splash! Toilets for All, its partnership with UNICEF. Launched on July 26, 2018, Make a Splash! Toilets for All is the first shared-value partnership for UNICEF with a Japanese company in the Water, Sanitation, and Hygiene space, aiming to contribute to progress toward Sustainable Development Goal 6.21.
Today, open defecation is practiced out of necessity or customs in many parts of the world. Approximately 800 children2 die every day from preventable diarrhea-related illnesses, due to poor hygiene, unsafe water and inadequate sanitation. The absence of safe, clean toilets is a particular threat to women and girls who at times have to walk long distances in the dark to relieve themselves.
Combining UNICEF’s expertise in sanitation behavior change and LIXIL’s in affordable toilet solutions, the partners have initiated activities in Kenya, Tanzania, and Ethiopia. Over the course of this first year, progress has been made against the three objectives of the partnership. Highlights include:
Market-shaping programs to develop the sanitation economy
Using innovative market-shaping approaches, the partnership focuses on developing open markets for sanitation products that meet consumer needs and budgets. Together, the partners are working on the ground to inspire behavioral change and to trigger demand for sanitary products. In Kenya, the partners are focusing on strengthening existing supply chains and have brought together manufacturers, wholesalers and retailers, NGOs and local governments to review key enabling factors and deepen collaboration. In Tanzania, the partners are working to support the government’s National Sanitation Campaign to make products available in order to meet demand for improved sanitation and assist with monitoring the outcome. In Ethiopia, LIXIL is looking into its supply chains aimed at contributing to a stronger sanitation economy. In the coming months, the partners will focus on scaling up their efforts in the three countries and strengthen collaborations in new markets.
Fundraising to support the partnership
The partnership has been a source of engagement for employees as well. Under the name “Team Splash”, employees in Japan and overseas are contributing with their donations to the achievement of the partnership goals.
The support also has extended to the third edition of LIXIL’s own “Toilets for All” campaign3 , a campaign in Japan, in which a percentage of the sales of shower toilets sold by LIXIL in Japan will be donated to Make a Splash! to support the partnership’s activities.
Engaging in joint advocacy efforts
In Tanzania, UNICEF and LIXIL are working with the government’s national sanitation campaign, “Nyumba Ni Choo,” (“a home is only complete with a good toilet”), which is an all-out activation and awareness campaign to make sure everyone in the country has access to a quality toilet by 2025. As a next step, the partners are planning to encourage other countries to establish similar campaigns that support greater coordination of both public and private partners’ efforts towards improved access to sanitation on a large scale. They will also work on identifying policy constraints and build on drivers in order to accelerate sanitation access.
Jin Montesano, LIXIL Executive Officer and Senior Managing Director overseeing Corporate Responsibility, commented, “Today, open defecation is still a prevalent practice in many rural and semi-rural regions of the world, resulting in water and sanitation-related diseases that are among the leading causes of preventable deaths. Jointly, through UNICEF’s expertise in education on improved sanitation and LIXIL’s expertise in sanitary solutions, we are starting to see results. We are confident that we can further improve sanitation and contribute to the health and safety of children, as well as the communities they live in.”
“This has been a very productive year for the partnership. The teams have been collaborating closely on the ground for a year now, committed to making a difference and learning to work together. We have now established action plans that will guide our activities for the next year of the partnership, including rigorous monitoring and tracking. We will also continue providing viable solutions, designed specifically for developing markets with our unique brand, SATO. We are proud to be able to support local economies while generating social value,” said Junichi Goto, CEO, SATO.
UNICEF and LIXIL are working in communities to drive the demand for better sanitation. Through localized and targeted activities, the partners can deliver to the hardest to reach.
UNICEF works in some of the world’s toughest places, to reach the world’s most disadvantaged children. Across 190 countries and territories, we work for every child, everywhere, to build a better world for everyone. For more information about UNICEF and its work for children, visit www.unicef.org. Follow us on Twitter and Facebook.
LIXIL makes pioneering water and housing products that solve everyday, real-life challenges, making better homes a reality for everyone, everywhere. Drawing on our Japanese heritage, we create world-leading technology and innovate to make high quality products that transform homes. But the LIXIL difference is how we do this; through meaningful design, an entrepreneurial spirit, a dedication to improving accessibility for all, and responsible business growth. Our approach comes to life through industry leading brands, including INAX, GROHE, American Standard, and TOSTEM. Over 70,000 colleagues operating in more than 150 countries are proud to make products that touch the lives of more than a billion people every day.
LIXIL Group Corporation (TSE Code: 5938) is the listed holding company for LIXIL’s portfolio of businesses.
1 6.2: by 2030, achieve access to adequate and equitable sanitation and hygiene for all, and end open defecation, paying special attention to the needs of women and girls and those in vulnerable situations.
2 WHO/UNICEF Joint Monitoring Programme report, Progress on drinking water, sanitation and hygiene: 2000-2017: Special focus on inequalities
3 LIXIL’s third “Toilets for All” campaign takes place from June to November 2019.
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