More than 250,000 children under five years of age die every year from diarrhoeal diseases in the Eastern and Southern Africa region (ESAR). Poor water and sanitation, and unsafe hygiene practices are the main causes of diarrhoea.
Around 247 million people in ESAR live without basic sanitation.
Some 157 million people do not get their drinking water from sources that are considered clean and safe.
Studies have shown that more than 600,000 child deaths in sub-Saharan Africa could be avoided with proper access to water, sanitation and hygiene. Hand-washing alone can reduce acute respiratory infections by up to 23 percent.