Barbara Frost on the rise and rise of WaterAid | Source: Third Sector, April 22 2016 |
The chief executive has led the charity for a decade of almost uninterrupted success and has escaped the fire directed at others.
In 1972 Barbara Frost left Keele University after two years studying psychology and social sciences, and went on what was intended to be a gap year. She took the so-called magic bus to Istanbul, continued by public transport on the hippy trail to India and Nepal, and ended up living in a commune in Australia. She didn’t come back to England for 24 years.
During that time she made rapid progress in public service jobs, developed homecare services in New South Wales and worked for Oxfam, Save the Children and ActionAid in Mozambique and Malawi. And when she finally returned to England in the mid-1990s it was to head the charity Action on Development and Disability – based, by coincidence, where she grew up, near Frome in Somerset.
She’s now been chief executive for a decade of one of the UK’s most successful and highly regarded charities, which works to provide water, sanitation and hygiene in 31 developing countries. Since 2010 she has also led WaterAid International, the federation set up to coordinate the UK charity’s relations with WaterAids that have sprung up in the US, Canada, Australia, Sweden and India.
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WaterAid – Water: At What Cost? The State of the World’s Water 2016
Our new report, launched to mark World Water Day 2016, reveals that the poorest people in the world are paying the highest price for safe water – and calls on governments to act now for universal access.
Today, more than 650 million people are living without access to an ‘improved’ source of drinking water.The price paid by these communities – in wasted income, ill-health, and lost productivity – is extremely high, and has a devastating impact from the family to the national level.
This report reveals the worst affected countries in the world, as well as the most improved, and calls on governments to take urgent action.
WaterAid – Healthy Start: the first month of life
Bringing a new life into the world should be a time of love and hope for mother and baby, wherever they happen to live.
But, around the world, one in every 50 births leads to heartbreak for parents, as their precious newborn son or daughter will die before they are a month old.
In 2013, over 2.7 million babies died in their first four weeks of life. This is overwhelmingly a problem of the developing world – with over 99% of neonatal deaths occurring in low and middle income countries.
In the year the world replaces the Millennium Development Goals with the Sustainable Development Goals, it is time to ensure that the next generation of children is given the best start in life – a healthy start.