IKEA Foundation commits 12.4 mn euro grant to Water.org

New Delhi, March 22 (IANS) IKEA Foundation has committed 12.4 million euro to Water.org to expand its WaterCredit model, helping one million people in India and Indonesia to have access to safe water and sanitation, a company statement said here on Tuesday.

“Our work at Water.org has never been more important, and thanks to this grant and to the IKEA Foundation, we are going to help hundreds of thousands of kids gain access to safe water and sanitation and impact their lives forever,” said Matt Damon, co-founder of Water.org.

This new grant will scale Water.org’s WaterCredit model using microfinance to break down the barriers between people and access to safe water and sanitation.

“By supporting the development of game-changing approaches like WaterCredit, the IKEA Foundation is helping drive the critical innovation needed to end the water and sanitation crisis,” said Gary White, co-founder and CEO of Water.org.

The World Bank estimates that 21 percent of communicable diseases in India are linked to unsafe water and the lack of hygiene practices, and 50 percent of India’s population continues to practice open defecation.

“We believe that every child deserves a healthy start in life and this is why we are supporting Water.org’s innovative programmes to help families in India and Indonesia access safe water and better sanitation facilities, giving them improved health and a life of dignity,” said Per Heggenes, CEO, IKEA Foundation.

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