Enhancing water and sanitation in the Balkan region: Our newest project unveiled!

Discover our latest initiative aimed at further improving water and sanitation in rural communities across the Balkans! Nearly 10 years of fruitful partnership with dedicated organizations, we are championing sustainable water, sanitation, wastewater, and waste management, safeguarding the environment, and promoting public health in rural and peri-urban regions. Explore innovative educational programs, introducing the Water and Sanitation Safety Planning (WSSP) instrument (based on WHO guidelines), and covering a wide range of topics from water hygiene to Menstrual Health Management (MHM).

We are thrilled to introduce our new follow-up project, which strives to enhance water and sanitation conditions in rural areas of the Balkan region. Working closely with our long-term network partners in Romania, North Macedonia, Albania, Serbia, and Bosnia-Herzegovina, we are committed to fostering sustainable water, sanitation, wastewater, and waste management practices.

Our primary goal is to introduce and further develop the Water and Sanitation Safety Planning (WSSP) instrument in these countries. The WSSP provides effective methods for risk management in water and sanitation supply and outlines measures to minimize risks and improve water and sanitation conditions.

A key component of our project is the online educational platform, the so-called “Water Classroom”. We are delighted to expand this platform, making interactive training materials on WASH and WSSP available in Albanian and Serbian, alongside the existing resources, materials and good practices in Romanian and Macedonian.

Through collaborative efforts with teachers, students, and relevant stakeholders from various administrative, political, and institutional backgrounds, we are conducting educational activities to familiarize them with the WSSP compendium relevant to SDG 4, 5, and 6. In North Macedonia, we are dedicated to inclusivity by incorporating children with disabilities into our educational programs, which include adapted learning materials.

Furthermore, we are collaborating with universities in North Macedonia and Albania to create academic-level educational materials, promoting knowledge exchange and research in the field of water and sanitation safety planning.

To date, over 2,000 pupils from 70 schools in the Balkan countries have actively participated in WASH and WSSP activities. These activities encompassed diverse tasks such as testing different water sources for nitrate concentration, conducting surveys, and visiting water supply and wastewater treatment plants. The Compendium is continually being enriched and will be tailored to suit academic levels.

As part of our efforts, we are developing interactive and playful teaching materials on microplastics, complementing our educational activities and integrating them into the “Water Classroom” to raise awareness about the environmental impact of microplastics. A pivotal aspect of our project centres on Menstrual Health Management (MHM). Together with our partners, we are conducting a cost-benefit analysis of menstrual products and another survey on menstrual poverty. Based on the results, we advocate for the provision of free menstrual products in schools and public buildings. Our North Macedonian partners will  collaborate with gender organizations and institutions to address gender-specific taxation discrimination concerning menstrual products.

We are resolute in promoting gender equality in the WASH sector. To achieve this, we are conducting comprehensive data collection in the project countries, laying the foundation for evidence-based recommendations, and driving positive changes.


We extend our heartfelt gratitude to the German Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation, Nuclear Safety and Consumer Protection (BMUV) for financing this project under the Export Initiative Environmental Protection (EXI).






We also express our appreciation to our project partners, Journalists for Human Rights (North Macedonia), Woman in Development & Milieukontakt Albania (Albania), Aquademica (Romania), Environmental Ambassadors for Sustainable Development (Serbia), and Ekotim (Bosnia-Herzegovina), for their long-term successful and dedicated collaboration.