As governments prepare to gather at the United Nations General Assembly in New York on September 19 and 20, a new report published by a group of six influential aid agencies provides clear and compelling evidence that a combined approach to tackling poverty and diseasethat brings together work on water and sanitation, health, education, and nutrition/food securityachieves better results for the world's poorest.
Entitled Join up, Scale up: How integration can defeat disease and poverty, the report, co-authored by Action Against Hunger, Action for Global Health (UK & France), End Water Poverty, PATH, Tearfund, and WaterAid, highlights examples across 17 countries of how bringing different development approaches togetheror integrationis working to help tackle poverty and disease, and calls on the international community, including donor and developing-country governments, to prioritise and invest in these joined-up programmes.
"We have clear and compelling evidence that integrated health, education, water and sanitation programs can achieve more significant and sustainable benefits for the world's poorest communities", stated Dr David Winder, CEO of WaterAid in America. "UN agencies and member States need to respond to the evidence presented here and use their influence to move the international community to expand upon these successes."
As the challenges of poverty and lack of access to health, nutrition, water and sanitation, and education overlap in people's lives, integrated aid programmes result in more effective and lasting solutions. For example, a hand washing and oral hygiene programme in elementary schools in the Philippinesinvolving the Department for Education, the not-for-profit organisation Fit for School, and regional and local governmentcut school absenteeism by 30 percent, while the number of underweight children was reduced by one-fifth in targeted schools.
"Combining and coordinating services makes common sens
|Contact: Hratche Koundarjian, Media Officer, WaterAid|