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New partnership with WaterAid

Twinings and WaterAid join forces for healthier, happier tea growing communities

We have joined forces with WaterAid to transform the lives of 4,000 people in Darjeeling through access to clean water, decent toilets and good hygiene.

The new partnership will provide these basic needs to communities and schools in 21 villages across two tea estates in the Darjeeling District of West Bengal, India, over the next two years.

With our funding, WaterAid will ensure all 21 villages have well-maintained piped water supply systems that protects the springs from contamination and provides clean, easily accessible water. We will also help build decent toilets and waste management systems and run hygiene education in the villages and schools.

The partnership will particularly focus on the challenges faced by women, including menstrual hygiene management and promoting female empowerment. Without decent toilets, good menstrual hygiene knowledge or access to sanitary materials, women are at risk of infection and often miss out on money earning opportunities across the tea estates because many have to return home to change during their period.

"When we fill the kettle to make a cup of tea, we take for granted the seemingly endless supply of safe, clean water that flows. But this is a privilege not available to millions of people in many parts of the world.

At Twinings, we are always working to understand the needs of people who live and work in tea-growing communities, and to find ways to improve conditions and livelihoods.

We are very pleased to be partnering with WaterAid, who have great expertise and experience in developing water and sanitation projects, for this initiative in Darjeeling, India."

Bob Tavener, Twinings CEO

Despite Darjeeling’s natural beauty, high rainfall and springs, fresh water is in short supply because the springs are not protected and are vulnerable to contamination. Diarrhoea and other waterborne diseases are common, often forcing people to miss school or work.

"Access to water and sanitation is one of the most pressing challenges for tea workers and their families in Darjeeling, and we’re delighted to address this through our partnership with Twinings.

We aim to establish effective and sustainable systems to ensure this partnership will have long-lasting effects for thousands of people. In addition to this, we will be working with Twinings to measure the economic benefits of improved access to clean water, decent toilets and good hygiene to encourage other companies and their supply chains that this is a worthy investment that not only improves people’s lives but that of the bottom line too"

Tim Wainwright, WaterAid Chief Executive

For more information on how we support communities through housing, sanitation, water and hygiene.

Find out more

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