CARE/Brendan Bannon 2012

CARE has supported water+ activities for over fifty years with a current portfolio of more than 180 projects in 51 countries. Our approach to water+ activities reflects the organization’s breadth of experience and expertise.

Lack of access to safe water is both a cause and a consequence of poverty and is one of the top needs frequently cited by communities. CARE’s programming in water+ has evolved substantially since our first drinking water supply project in 1957 in Mexico. During the 1980s, CARE introduced health and hygiene education and sanitation and began to incorporate watershed protection as more holistic approaches to resource management were adopted.

More recently, CARE has placed increasing focus on sustainability and reaching large-scale coverage. This has resulted in greater emphasis on advocacy and on community-led governance with beneficiaries making decisions about their own water and sanitation systems, working with the public and private sectors. Our current work recognizes water as a productive asset with social, political and environmental relevance that must be taken into account in programming.