Each year on November 19, World Toilet Day is observed to highlight the global sanitation crisis that affects billions of people around the world who are living without access to a safely managed toilet.

Without clean, safe toilets, human waste can contaminate communities’ food and water sources, which increases people’s chances of getting sick.

When people don’t have access to a toilet, they practice open defecation. Around the world, at least 892 million people continue to practice open defecation. Each day, nearly 1,000 children die around the world from diarrhea related to poor sanitation and contaminated water sources.

Safe sanitation, the practice of good hygiene, and a safe water supply can save the lives of more than 350,000 children a year.

We face a global sanitation crisis as 3.6 billion people are still living with poor-quality toilets that ruin their health and pollute their environment.

Inadequate sanitation systems spread human waste into rivers, lakes and soil, contaminating the water resources under our feet. Safely managed sanitation protects groundwater from human waste pollution.

Everyone must have access to a toilet connected to a sanitation system that effectively removes and treats human waste.

The theme for World Toilet Day 2022 is, ‘let’s make the invisible visible’ explores the link between sanitation and groundwater while focusing on how inadequate sanitation systems spread human waste into rivers, lakes and soil, polluting underground water resources.

This observance, held annually since 2013, marks taking action to tackle the global sanitation crisis and achieve Sustainable Development Goal 6: sanitation and water for all by 2030. However, we are seriously off track to ensuring that goal. With only eight years left, the world needs to work four times faster to meet this target.