July 17, 2020
The All England Lawn Tennis Club (AELTC) has committed £1.2 million in a three-year partnership with charity WaterAid UK. The partnership aims to bring ‘clean water, decent toilets and good hygiene’ to everyone by the year 2030, in line with UN Global Goal 6: Clean Water and Sanitation.
While substantial progress has been made to increase access to clean drinking water and sanitation in recent years, billions of people still lack these basic services. Worldwide, one in three people do not have access to safe drinking water, two out of five people do not have a basic hand-washing facility with soap and water and more than 673 million people still practice open defecation. Meanwhile, the COVID-19 pandemic has demonstrated the critical importance of sanitation, hygiene and adequate access to clean water for preventing and containing diseases.
“The absence of clean water has a devastating impact on people’s health, education and ability to earn a living,” said Helen Parker, Head of the Wimbledon Foundation.
“In line with our goal to support healthy and active lives, we are proud to be extending our partnership with WaterAid to deliver this multifaceted approach to transforming healthcare facilities around the world to have a far-reaching impact on thousands of people’s lives.”
The AELTC says the coronavirus pandemic has highlighted the importance of handwashing and good hygiene, and has pointed to the fact that one in 10 people across the world live without clean water close by.
The current initiative expands on the Wimbledon Foundation’s initial three-year partnership with WaterAid UK, which began in 2018 with an annual donation of £100,000. The new partnership will focus on healthcare facilities which lack clean water and toilets, and which see health workers unable to wash their hands, sterilise surgical equipment or ensure mothers have a safe environment in which to give birth.
Tim Wainwright, Chief Executive of WaterAid, said: “The COVID-19 crisis has highlighted just how important it is that everyone no matter where they live has clean water, somewhere to wash their hands with soap and a decent toilet.
“Now, more than ever, we must all scale up our efforts so that no-one misses out on a healthy future. WaterAid always works to create long term change in communities and knowing that we can count on the support of the Wimbledon Foundation for the next three years will help us bring more and more people out of poverty.”
The news marks the AELTC’s latest move to fund charitable causes, having announced a further £1.2 million coronavirus fund to support local and regional charities tackling the pandemic.
This article originally appeared in the Sport Industry Daily.