19 November 2015

Around the world in 45 toilets

Anyone who has ever travelled outside of their comfort zone would have had to use whatever public toilets were available. Reuters took a snapshot of 45 of the world's more basic and challenging toilets to highlight World Toilet Day.


The World Toilet Organization was founded on 19 November 2001 and the inaugural World Toilet Summit was held on the same day, the first global summit of its kind.

The UN recognised the need for an international day to draw global attention to the sanitation crisis – and so we established World Toilet Day on 19 November.

World Toilet Day has continued to garner support over the years, with NGOs, the private sector, civil society organisations and the international community joined in to mark the global day.

According to a UN report, the 2015 goal to halve the proportion of people living without sanitation is running 150 years behind schedule. 1 billion (15 % of the world population) still practice open defecation.

1000 children died per day from diarrhoeal diseases due to poor sanitation in 2013. These deaths are preventable.

Every $1 (R14) spent on water and sanitation generates a $4.3 return in the form of reduced health care costs.

Read more:

2015 Report - Countries with the worst access to toilets