World Toilet Day

World Toilet Day Quick Facts - EU

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2024 Date19 November 2024
2025 Date19 November 2025

World Toilet Day

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World Toilet Day History

World Toilet Day is an annual global observance intended to raise awareness about the importance of sanitation and adequate toilet facilities for all. By focusing on the need for better hygiene and access to clean water, World Toilet Day aims to combat the spread of diseases, malnutrition, and death resulting from poor sanitation. The event also seeks to promote innovations and investments that will lead to long-lasting improvements in sanitation and water services worldwide.

Established in 2001 by the World Toilet Organization, World Toilet Day was officially recognized by the United Nations General Assembly in 2013. In the European Union (EU), this observance day serves as a reminder that although EU citizens generally enjoy access to safe and clean toilets, much of the world still suffers from inadequate sanitation facilities. The EU has made significant efforts to address this global issue through various initiatives such as contributing to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) set by the United Nations. One of the SDGs, specifically Target 6.2, aims to achieve access to adequate and equitable sanitation and hygiene for all by 2030.

As a part of the annual World Toilet Day observance, EU countries host various events and activities to raise awareness about the importance of sanitation and to encourage further action from governments, NGOs, and citizens alike. Seminars, workshops, and public awareness campaigns are held across Europe to emphasize the importance of proper sanitation and engage stakeholders in finding solutions for the global sanitation crisis. By observing World Toilet Day, the European Union demonstrates its commitment to improving sanitation conditions and promoting a healthy environment for all. World Toilet Day takes place every year on November 19th, and the EU joins the global community in working towards making safe and clean toilets accessible to all.

World Toilet Day facts

  • The theme for World Toilet Day in 2023 was Accelerating Change.
  • 1 in 8 people in the world practice open defecation, meaning that the person must relieve him/herself without cover or shelter from other people.
  • Diarrhea is the second leading cause of deaths in children under age 5 in developing countries. Diarrhea is primarily due to poor hygiene and sanitation
  • In the European Union, it is common practice to leave the toilet seat down and to clean after oneself. Users are generally expected to flush the toilet and leave the restroom in a clean and sanitary condition for the next person.
  • Pay-to-use restrooms are common in many European countries. Users often have to pay around €0.50-1 to access a public toilet. In some locations, restroom attendants collect the fees, while in others, automated machines handle the payment.

Top things to do in the EU for World Toilet Day

  • Spread awareness by using the hashtag #WorldToiletDay, #WeCantWait and #ToiletAccessIsARight.
  • Read a book about toilets and the importance of sanitation. Some suggestions are: Sanitation & Water Supply in Low-Income Countries, Sitting Pretty An Uninhibited History of the Toilet and The Big Necessity.
  • Organize clean-up activities around public toilets or areas prone to poor sanitation. Encourage local residents, volunteers, and community groups to participate in cleaning and maintaining the cleanliness of these spaces.
  • Develop and distribute educational materials such as brochures, posters, or videos that promote good sanitation practices. Collaborate with schools and educational institutions to include lessons or activities related to sanitation and hygiene in their curriculum.

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