managed by R. Gensch
The work of the GTO is motivated by the fact that the sanitation coverage in many parts of the world is insufficient. Estimates by the WHO and UNICEF (2008) show that 2.5 billion people, living mainly in so-called "developing countries", do not have access to adequate sanitation facilities: a breach of the affected individuals' dignity.
Missing toilets and unhygienic wastewater disposal can result in surface water bodies, groundwater and the soil becoming contaminated by untreated effluents. This in turn spreads disease and can be dangerous to all, but particularly affected are women, the elderly and children. As a result, sanitation was linked to safe drinking water supply in the Millennium Development Goals of the United Nations at the World Summit Conference for Sustainable Development in Johannesburg (2002).
The GTO’s mission is to protect the environment and improve public health by raising awareness of, and providing people with, clean and sustainable toilet and wastewater treatment systems.
Our vision is access to clean toilets and sustainable sanitation systems for all.
The GTO started its work with projects to improve toilet and excreta management systems in Zambia, Sri Lanka and Indonesia.
Since 2005 the GTO has hit the headlines with its worldwide campaign “Sanitation is Dignity”, a project aimed at smashing the "toilet taboo" and focusing minds on the serious issue of toilet and excreta management systems. 40 % of the worlds population lives without primary sanitation accommodation; hardly a joking matter.
As part of our educational work, the GTO disseminates information about sanitation in schools. We have also developed a German-specific programme aimed at raising awareness among students of existing sanitation problems in their school, and linking this to the experience of people in many developing countries.
The GTO was an official partner of the UN during the “International Year of Sanitation”-Program in 2008, and is supported by UN Water.
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