Issue 164 | Oct 3, 2014 | World Habitat Day: Focus on Slums
The first Monday in each October is World Habitat Day. This year the theme is Voices from Slums. This issue of the weekly contains news of upcoming urban events, urban innovation awards, recent urban WASH studies, and other reports and resources on issues faced by the urban poor.
World Habitat Day: Voices from Slums, October 6, 2014 – Link
Each year World Habitat Day takes on a new theme chosen by the United Nations based on current issues relevant to the habitat agenda. The themes are selected to bring attention to UN-Habitat’s mandate to promote sustainable development policies that ensure adequate shelter for all. This year’s theme, Voices from Slums, is intended to give voice to slum dwellers for improving quality of living conditions in existing slums. This is the UN’s official website for the event.
International Conference on Urban Health, March 9-12, 2015, Bangladesh – Link
The International Society for Urban Health is an association of researchers, scholars, professionals, community members, and workers and activists from various disciplines, roles, and areas of the world whose work is directly related to the health effects of urban environments and urbanization. The International Conference on Urban Health provides an international forum for information exchange among urban health stakeholders. The theme for the 2015 conference is Urban Health for a Sustainable Future: The Post 2015 Agenda.
URBAN HEALTH STUDIES
USAID/WASHplus Urban Health Updates – Link
Urban Health Updates contains more than 800 peer-review articles and “gray” literature reports on health issues faced by the urban poor.
Urban Health: It’s Time to Get Moving! Global Health Science & Practice, May 2014. V Barbiero. Link
Policy makers must commit to a long-term action plan that addresses the triple burden of health issues faced by growing urban populations. A comprehensive global urban health strategy is in order; one similar to the global approach to HIV/AIDS, polio eradication, and malaria. The strategy should build on the urban experience, both positive and negative, from all regions of the globe and provide a clear vision and programmatic guidance.
Published on Sep 2, 2014
The video features the work of CCODE and the Federation of the Rural and Urban Poor in Blantyre, framed on the SHARE (Sanitation and Hygiene Applied for Equity) research project, as well as the challenges that the country faces in terms of sanitation, water and hygiene.
SHARE’s work to date in Malawi has focused on Ecological Sanitation (Ecosan), which has been heavily promoted in urban areas. Blantyre in Malawi is also one of the cities included in the City-Wide Sanitation Project.
For more information about the work of CCODE and the Federation of the Rural and Urban Poor visit http://www.ccodemw.org/.
For further info about SHARE visit http://www.shareresearch.org
Issue 160 | Sept 5, 2014 | Focus on WASH & Nutrition
This issue contains some of the most recent studies on stunting, open defecation, nutritional interventions, and other WASH and nutrition issues. Recent reports from the World Bank Water and Sanitation Program discuss the impacts of improved sanitation on child growth in Vietnam and Lao PDR. Training materials include the new Global Handwashing Day guide from the Global Public-Private Partnership on Handwashing and a WASHplus infographic on tippy taps.
Left, Right, and Toilets. Ideas for India, Aug 2014. D Spears. (Link)
Eliminating open defecation in India is a policy priority. This column contends that successful strategies for reducing open defecation may not fit policy stereotypes of the left or the right. While rural sanitation policy in states where this practice is most concentrated has been focused on latrine construction, promotion of latrine use is what will make a difference.
What Do Toilets Have To Do with Nutrition? More Than You Might Think. IFPRI Blog, July 2014. L Haddad. (Link)
A new working paper from the Institute of Development Studies has looked at data from 116 low- and middle-income countries from 1970 to 2012. It found that access to safe water (20 percent) and improved sanitation (15 percent) explained 35 percent of the variation in stunting rates across countries and time periods. This reflects two things: the fact that water and sanitation are strongly linked to stunting reduction, and that both water and sanitation coverage have increased strongly in the past four decades.
JOURNAL ARTICLES BY PUBLICATION DATE
The Effect of India’s Total Sanitation Campaign on Defecation Behaviors and Child Health in Rural Madhya Pradesh: A Cluster Randomized Controlled Trial. PLoS Medicine, Aug 2014. R Sumeet. (Link)
The objective of this study is to measure the effect of the Total Sanitation Campaign implemented with capacity building support from The World Bank’s Water and Sanitation Program in Madhya Pradesh on availability of individual household latrines (IHLs), defecation behaviors, and child health (diarrhea, highly credible gastrointestinal illness [HCGI], parasitic infections, anemia, and growth). The intervention led to modest increases in availability of IHLs and even more modest reductions in open defecation. These improvements were insufficient to improve child health outcomes. The results underscore the difficulty of achieving adequately large improvements in sanitation levels to deliver expected health benefits within large-scale rural sanitation programs.
We don’t want another catastrophe besides the one we already have. Fatma (43) mother of 9 children
Since the start of the Israeli assault on Gaza on 7 July 2014, codenamed “Protective Edge”, the water and wastewater infrastructure in Gaza has been heavily affected by Israeli airstrikes and shelling.
Main water supply and wastewater as well as electricity infrastructure has been hit. As a result services have been cut or severely disrupted, affecting the entire population in Gaza.
Up to 25 per cent of Gaza’s population were displaced. The 1.8 million people in Gaza, living in homes and shelters have extremely restricted access to water and sanitation.
Fatma, 45, was displaced with her family and sought shelter at a school in Ash Shuja’iyeh. She speaks in a Thirsting for Justice campaign video about the problems with water, sanitation and hygiene that her family faces amongst the many other displaced.
Thirsting for Justice is an initiative of EWASH, the Emergency Water Sanitation and Hygiene group in the Occupied Palestinian Territory.
Issue 157 | August 8, 2014 | Focus on Disease Outbreaks
This issue highlights recent alerts, news and publications on cholera and Ebola outbreaks. On August 1, 2014, WHO published its latest statistics on the number of cholera cases and cholera-related deaths in 2013. In 2013, there was a 47% decrease in the number of cases reported compared to 2012 and this is the second consecutive year in which reported cholera era cases declined. Resources on the Ebola outbreaks include WHO alerts, a WHO fact sheet, recent newspaper articles and reports on the One Health approach, which investigates human, animal, and environmental interconnectedness and its impact on health.
CHOLERA NEWS/OUTBREAK ALERTS
Recent Newspaper Articles on Outbreaks – Cameroon – Aug 6, 2014 | Ghana – Aug 4, 2014 | South Sudan – July 30, 2014 | Vietnam – Aug 6 2014 |
CHOLERA STATISTICS/FACT SHEETS
Cholera Fact Sheet, 2014. World Health Organization. (Link)
Cholera is an acute diarrhoeal infection caused by ingestion of food or water contaminated with the bacterium Vibrio cholerae. Every year, there are an estimated 3–5 million cholera cases and 100,000–120,000 deaths due to cholera. The short incubation period of two hours to five days enhances the potentially explosive pattern of outbreaks.
USAID-IWASH Ebola Preparedness Response
Cholera in 2013. Weekly Epidem Rec, Aug 2014. WHO. (Link)
In 2013, 47 countries reported a total of 129,064 cases of cholera including 2102 deaths, giving a case-fatality rate of 1.63%. This represents a decrease of 47% in the number of cases reported compared to 2012 and this is the second consecutive year in which reported cholera era cases declined.