Water for Women Fund Extended to 2024

People in boats and by the banks of the Tonle Sap Lake in Cambodia where houses on stilts are in the background

A community situated on the banks of the Tonle Sap Lake; a climate-vulnerable area of Cambodia (Miguel Jeronimo Photography)

Water for Women Fund extended to strengthen inclusive climate-resilient water, sanitation and hygiene for Asian and Pacific communities


14 November 2022: Sharm El-Sheikh, Egypt: The Water for Women Fund, a five-year inclusive water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) program on track to reach three million people across Asia Pacific by the end of 2022, will be extended for two years.

The Australian government will invest a further $36 million to support climate-resilient, inclusive and sustainable WASH services and systems, and safeguard water security in our region.

“Climate change is affecting our region right now – displacing communities, endangering food and water supplies, damaging vital infrastructure,” said Australia’s Minister for International Development and the Pacific, the Hon Pat Conroy at the ACFID National Virtual Conference, where the extension was announced. “DFAT has worked with the ten NGO partners that deliver WASH programs to re-engineer these programs to be climate resilient, I am pleased to say that, today, I can confirm we are committing an extra $36 million to [Water for Women], bringing our total to almost $155 million.”

Empowering women and other marginalised groups remains a strong focus of Water for Women; without equality there cannot be resilience, and as the most affected by climate change, their unique lived experiences, knowledge and skills are critical to conserving natural resources, building community resilience and responding to climate emergencies.

“Equitable access to WASH is a critical building block for a climate-resilient future,” says Fund Manager, Alison Baker, “but to achieve SDG6 – water and sanitation for all - and all other SDGs for that matter, we must ensure that no one is left behind. To do that, we must transform WASH services, strengthen WASH systems, challenge negative social norms and ensure that diverse voices are not only part of the decision-making, but leading the change."

In the race towards a resilient 2030, civil society organisation and local partnerships are key. Water for Women partners are well placed to build on their long-term work in-country supporting inclusive and sustainable WASH services and systems, to now strengthen climate-resilience through WASH. Like WaterAid in Papua New Guinea who are working with Hydrology and Risk Consulting (HARC) to develop and apply an inclusive WASH and Climate Adaptation Framework focusing on the local and district levels to strengthen the District WASH Plan.  

From 2023 to 2024, Water for Women will partner with eight civil society organisations to implement 14 WASH projects in 15 Asia Pacific countries, with the aim of improving the delivery of inclusive climate-resilient WASH, while seven research projects will address knowledge and practice gaps for inclusive and climate-resilient WASH.


COP27 delegates are invited to join

The social tile for the COP27 session Partnerships for Future Proofing - building inclusive communities for resilient water and WASH in the Asia Pacific region

Water for Women is presenting on Partnerships for future proofing – building inclusive communities for resilient water and WASH in the Asia-Pacific region at the Australian Pavilion on Water and Gender Day, highlighting how equitable WASH is a building block for a climate-resilient future.


About Water for Women

Australia’s Water for Women Fund supports improved health, gender equality and wellbeing in Asian and Pacific communities through socially inclusive, sustainable and climate-resilient WASH projects and research in 15 countries. It is the Australian Government’s flagship WASH development assistance program, partnering with civil society and research organisations and investing AUD $154.9 million from 2018 to 2024. 

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