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IRC's CEO Patrick Moriarty wishing you a wonderful 2016 

Copyright: © ERIC LAFFORGUE / Art in all of us / CorbisDear friends and colleagues,

As we head towards end of year festivities, and look forward to 2016, it's time for a brief moment of reflection.

2015 marked a crucial turning point for water and sanitation globally. The era of the Millennium Development Goals drew to an end with the launching of the Global Goals. The adoption of Global Goal 6 for Water and Sanitation was a hugely important outcome of intensive campaigning by IRC and the WASH community as a whole. The unequivocal commitment by the governments of all the world's nations to universal access to water and sanitation by 2030 marks a radical step forward. There is now nowhere to hide – no excuses are possible – everyone, everywhere is entitled to water and sanitation services that last forever. Our challenge is now how to ensure that this bold goal is achieved in practice.

To mark the change, we started a countdown on our website - not for 15 years but for 5. This is to emphasise our conviction that unless we make an unprecedented effort over the next few years to garner high levels of government commitment, and to put in place fundamentals such as realistic financing plans, we won't achieve our Goal. Business as usual won't cut it – universal access requires a step change.

To this end we have started a new initiative with WaterAid, Water for People, Aguaconsult and Osprey Foundation. Launched in May, the Agenda for Change is our commitment to live the change necessary to get to universal access. Change in how water and sanitation are viewed: not as charitable gifts but as services to which people have a right. Change in how we, as external actors, play our role: as supporters and enablers of national systems and not as alternatives to them. Change in the political priority that governments give to water and sanitation – providing strong leadership that everyone else (private sector, NGOs, donors) supports. And change in how services are financed – understanding that without the right mix of private and public investment, user fees and effectively targeted aid we won't ever get services to everyone.

2015 was the year IRC ranked 3rd on Philanthropedia's list of most outstanding WASH organisations worldwide. In 2016, we will continue to challenge ourselves and our partners to maintain a commitment to excellence, and above all to creating excellent and enduring national systems that deliver water and sanitation to all citizens regardless of wealth, gender, caste or politics.

We have an exciting and challenging year ahead. In anticipation of it, we thank you for your partnership with us, your support to us, your trust and belief in us in 2015. It has been an honour to work with you driving our shared vision of change and progress. And we commit and look forward to continuing to do so in 2016!

Patrick Moriarty, IRC's CEO 

 

 

 

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