Coca-Cola and Urban Partnerships for Poverty Reduction (UPPR) dedicated the first water and sanitation project , completed under the ‘Every Drop Matters’ initiative in Tangail.
The project titled ‘Bangladesh-School-Led WASH Initiatives in Urban Slums’, is one of Coca-Cola Bangladesh’s efforts towards improving water and sanitation facilities in schools together with UPPR. The project has been implemented by SPACE, a national NGO, with technical assistance from Concern Universal Bangladesh.
Goutam Chandra Pal, Deputy Director-LG, Tangail and Manobendra Pal Milton, Mayor (in-charge), Tangail Pourashava dedicated the new facilities at Jobaida High School, AshekpurPurbo Para CDC, in Tangail in the presence of UpazilaNirbahi Officer (Education officer), SadarUpazila, Tangail; Neeraj Garg, Vice President – SWA, Coca-Cola; Cornelis de Wolf,Country Director, Concern Universal, Bangladesh, Executive Director, SPACE and UPPR Member Secretary, Mostafizur Rahman Khan
With the aim of improving the lives of students attending the schools as well as the communities surrounding it, the Every Drop Matters Project was begun in Tangail and Chandpur districts in Bangladesh in 2011.44 rural schools and communities have been given improved access to drinking water and sanitation facilities in the four districts of Tangail and Chandpur, thereby impacting 22,500 students and 300 teachers as well as impacting 95,000 people in adjacent slums areas.
Neeraj Garg, Vice President- South West Asia for Coca-Cola said“Globally, The Coca-Cola Company places a strong emphasis on sustainability, which is a key part of our Vision 2020. Water replenishment and sanitation form an integral part of our sustainability efforts around the world and ofcourse in Bangladesh as well. We have been working with UNDP globally and UPPR in Bangladesh to implement the Every Drop Matters project in schools and communities across four districts in the country. We have been able to impact the lives of thousands of students andcommunity members and we hope to continue to work with our partners UPPR, SPACE and Concern Universal in the future as well.”
“Many students in Bangladesh do not have adequate access to safe drinking water and proper sanitation facilities. More than half of the toilets are non-functional or partly functional, 25% schools with no/non functional water supply facilities and there are no seperate toilets for girls and boys in many schools. EDM provides adequate water supply and sanitation facilities in selected schools and also helps to incorporate WASH in the school curriculum to teach children about good hygeiene and sanitation practices both at schools and at homes. With partners like Coca-Cola, SPACE and Concern Universal, we hope to continue and expand our efforts in other UPPR project towns as well.” Said Azahar Ali, National Project Coordinator from UPPR
The project partners built wash-basins and toilets, recharged the ground water and built rain water harvesting projects. The project has also saved 5000 liters of public water due to its recharging and rainwater harvesting facilities and trained over 500 people in various capacity building programs.Since 2011, the project has been expanded to Dhaka and Chittagong with more than 40 schools benefitting from the initiative.
Every Drop Matters Global Partnership
The Coca-Cola Company (TCCC) and United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) are committed to identifying and supporting solutions to water-related challenges. This mutual commitment provides the basis for the Every Drop Matters (EDM) partnership. Spanning countries across Europe, the Commonwealth of Independent States, Middle East and Asia-Pacific, EDM joins forces with government and non-governmental organizations to promote sustainable, cost effective and replicable ways of managing water. Access to safe drinking water and basic sanitation, and responsible management of water resources are fundamental to social and economic development. EDM projects, engage local communities in finding practical solutions to fulfil these essential needs.
The Coca-Cola Company pledged US$2 million last year – the International Year of Water Cooperation – to EDM.
About Coca-Cola Bangladesh
Coca-Cola in Bangladesh refreshes thousands of consumers throughout the country through its core product offerings of Coca-Cola, Diet Coke, Sprite and Fanta. The system employs 528 people and indirectly provides employment to over 3,000 people. Coca-Cola is committed to strengthening the community through various programs, such as ‘Every Drop Matters’ and WASH, both of which help to provide water, sanitation, hygiene. Along with EDM, Coca-Cola Bangladesh partnered with UNHABITAT to launch the ‘Support My School’ Campaign in Bangladesh’. The SMS Campaign is Coca-Cola’s flagship initiative in the region and provides sanitation facilities, clean drinking water and recreation amenities in schools as well as builds awareness among school students about protecting and conserving the environment. The campaign aims to address issues in schools that lead to absenteeism or dropping out from school, especially amongst girls.