Water and Sanitation

Rural Sanitation in Cambodia

The challenge

Access to a safe, clean toilet in rural Cambodia was shockingly low in 2011 – only 28% of households had a household toilet.

People were forced to defecate in the open or use poor quality toilets, causing disease and illness, and impacting women and girls the most.

Traditional approaches to promoting toilets and safe sanitation were not leading householders to buy and install toilets – partly due to poor sales and marketing.

Our solution

Sanitation marketing programmes focused on marketing a toilet that people want and can afford.

These highly successful programmes have resulted in an increase in national coverage in Cambodia to 72% in 2022.

The aim of our latest initiative, the Cambodia Rural Sanitation Development Impact Bond is to increase coverage to as close to 100% as is possible so that everyone has access to a safe, clean hygienic toilet.

We are also reviewing our support to rural sanitation marketing with the potential to support high impact programmes in other countries.


We have developed a set of resources to provide more detail and to share learnings from our support to rural sanitation in Cambodia
The Cambodia Rural Sanitation DIB: Lessons learnt from the first year
Cambodia Rural Sanitation DIB: Fact Sheet
Cambodia Rural Sanitation DIB: Press Release