The World Toilet Association has been granted special consultative status by the United Nations Economic and Social Council for its expertise in health and hygiene.
This allows the WTA, currently led by Suwon Mayor Yeom Tae-young, to take part in meetings and events held by the UN to present ideas, build an international network and engage in lobbying.
The WTA applied for special consultative status with the council in May last year and received a recommendation from its Committee on Nongovernmental Organizations. The council approved the recommendation in a meeting in New York on Wednesday.
Suwon Mayor Yeom Tae-young (Yonhap)
“The WTA has now gained the stature befitting an international organization in the field of health and hygiene,” Yeom said.
“With the UN status as a foothold, we will expand cooperation with governments and institutions of various countries to spread an advanced toilet culture.”
Founded in 2007 by late former Suwon Mayor Sim Jae-duck, the WTA has carried out projects to raise the level of toilet sanitation around the world.
The WTA built 33 public toilets in 16 developing countries, including Ghana, Kenya, Laos, Mongolia and Cambodia, through last year under a project aimed at providing sanitary toilets in countries that lack public toilet facilities and have poor hygiene conditions.
The WTA has also hosted the World Toilet Leaders’ Forum and the International Toilet Culture Conference, six times each, to share good practices related to toilets and seek ways to improve toilet conditions.
By Kim So-hyun (firstname.lastname@example.org)