Nearly three quarters of UK mums say the toilet is the number one household facility they cannot do without, according to new research commissioned by Domestos to mark its new partnership with UNICEF, the world’s leading children’s organisation.
When asked to rate which one of the seven essential household items they felt they could not live without;
- An overwhelming 71% said that the toilet was the one thing they could not live without
- In comparison, only 10% that said they couldn’t cope without their washing machine and 6% without their refrigerator
The snapshot survey of 1,000 mums from across the UK also revealed that a dirty toilet is a mum’s biggest hygiene concern when it comes to keeping their children healthy;
- A third said that they were concerned that a dirty toilet would harm their child’s health, ranking it above dirty work surfaces (21%), catching germs from other children (19%) and stale food (17%)
- And yet despite this concern, over two fifths (44%) of mums surveyed said that their idea of a sanitation crisis is running out of loo roll.
The survey also revealed that over three quarters (76%) of UK mums surveyed are concerned with getting their child to move from nappies, to potties, to using the toilet before the age of two years old. But life couldn’t be more different for millions of mothers in the developing world, who don’t even have the luxury of their child being able to use a potty, let alone a toilet. With 280 million children under the age of five living in households without access to improved sanitation[i] mothers are more concerned with how to prevent their child from catching diarrhoea, a disease that kills 3,000 children every single day[ii]
The research, which marks the launch of a new partnership between Domestos and UNICEF which will fund vital sanitation work in South Sudan and Vietnam, highlights the harsh difference between access to proper and essential sanitation facilities, such as toilets, that UK mums take for granted, compared to the reality that mums face in developing countries.
Across the world, sanitation is a life and death issue. Currently 2.5 billion people do not have access to basic toilets[iii] and everyday an estimated 3,000 children die from diarrhoea caused by poor sanitation[iv]
In South Sudan, a country with one of the worst access rates to sanitation facilities in the world, less than 10% of the population use a toilet or latrine[v].
Championing this vital cause, the partnership between Domestos and UNICEF sees 5% of the average proceeds received[vi] from specially marked bottles of Domestos on sale in Sainsbury’s in the UK, donated to UNICEF’s sanitation work in Vietnam and South Sudan.
“With an estimated 45 million toilets in UK homes, access to a clean toilet is something we’d never dream of having to do without. As a leader in home hygiene that has helped protect families from germs for over 80 years, it’s our responsibility to take action against the global sanitation crisis. Through our new partnership with UNICEF we hope to better educate our consumers about the issue and inspire them to help support UNICEF’s worthy programme, which will help improve access to toilets for children and families across the world.”
David Titman, Brand Manager for Domestos
“It is completely wrong that billions of people across the world still don’t have access to the most basic toilet, even though we consider it the one household item that we couldn’t live without in the UK. Being able to use a proper toilet is no joke. Poor sanitation leads to illness, causes children, especially girls, to miss out on school, and in many cases leads to death. It shouldn’t be like this.
“We are thrilled to be working with Domestos so we can reach thousands of children and their families with better sanitation facilities, so that they really can survive and thrive.”
David Bull, UNICEF UK Executive Director
Through the support of the Unilever Foundation and Domestos, the partnership with UNICEF will result in an estimated 400,000 people living in open defecation free communities across nine countries; Gambia, Ghana, Nicaragua, Nigeria, Pakistan, Philippines, South Sudan, Sudan and Vietnam.
For more information on Domestos’ partnership with UNICEF and the global sanitation crisis log on to www.domestosforunicef.com.
[ii] UNICEF/WHO 2011. Levels and trends in Child Mortality. Report 2011. Estimates Developed by the UN inter-agency group on child mortality.
[iii] WHO/UNICEF Joint Monitoring Programme: Progress on drinking water and sanitation: 2012 Update
[iv] UNICEF/WHO 2011. Levels and trends in Child Mortality. Report 2011. Estimates Developed by the UN inter-agency group on child mortality.
[v] Plan Youth: Community Led Total Sanitation in South Sudan (2011)
[vi] During 1st July to 30th September 2012 in the UK Unilever gives 2p for every specially marked bottle of Domestos purchased in Sainsbury’s stores to UNICEF UK Registered Charity No: 1072612