Tag Archives: advocacy

WSSCC and Overseas Development Institute Publish Background Note on sanitation and hygiene advocacy

In 2009 WSSCC worked with the international NGO Tearfund and UK-based Overseas Development Institute (ODI) to examine how sector professionals advocate for sanitation and hygiene to health professionals – and how to improve that advocacy.

A number of leading sanitation and hygiene specialists provided input as well as professionals from the health sector and WSSCC National Coordinators. The outcomes are summarized in an ODI Background Note [1], which examines how health practitioners perceive sanitation and hygiene issues, how sanitation and hygiene professions can strengthen the case for improved services, and what the capacity and research needs are vis-à-vis training health staff in preventive sanitation- and hygiene-based interventions.

[1] Newborne, P. (2010). Making the case for sanitation and hygiene: opening doors in health. (Background note / ODI). London, UK, Overseas Development Institute (ODI). 6 p. : 4 boxes, 1 tab. 9 ref.
Download full document [PDF file]

WASHwatch.org: a new advocacy resource for civil society

A new online advocacy tool for the WASH sector is being developed. The website www.WASHwatch.org aims to make it easy for civil society to monitor their governments’ political declarations on WASH, such as eThekwini in Africa and SACOSAN in South Asia. Civil society organisations (CSOs) can also upload government budget data to compare how countries are prioritising the sector.

WASHwatch.org is currently under development and only accessible to registered users. Pages for Nepal and Nigeria have the most complete information so far. A public version will be available in the near future.

WASHwatch.org aims to make advocacy easier in the following ways:

  • Easy comparison of different countries’ progress against political commitments like eThekwini and SACOSAN.
  • Easy tracking of government budgets for WASH, and quick comparison to neighbouring countries
  • Easy printing of the data to take to a meeting

Source: Serena O’Sullivan, End Water Poverty blog, 27 May 2010

WSSCC gets US$ 2.1 million from Gates Foundation for hygiene and sanitation promotion

The Water Supply and Sanitation Collaborative Council (WSSCC) has received nearly $2.1 million from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to support its efforts at improving access to safe sanitation and promoting good hygiene practices for people in developing countries. These funds, provided over the next two years, will enable WSSCC to carry out its global networking, knowledge management and advocacy work programmes.

“We are thrilled and honoured to be selected by the Global Development Program of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation for these funds,” said WSSCC’s Executive Director, Jon Lane. “The foundation’s support will help us to carry out our work programme, to increase global and national awareness of these important issues, and to have a positive impact on peoples’ lives.”

The foundation is the first non-state donor to WSSCC, joining the Governments of Australia, the Netherlands, Norway, Sweden, Switzerland, the United Kingdom and the United States as supporters of the organisation.

Specifically, WSSCC will use the Gates Foundation grant to:

  • enhance coordination and collaboration through WSSCC’s National WASH Coalitions
  • circulate knowledge and information in the areas of sanitation, hygiene and water
  • influence the development and implementation of national policies, and
  • increase awareness and influence the global policy debate on sanitation and hygiene.

Source: WSSCC, 19 Feb 2010

IYS one year later: interview with Clarissa Brocklehurst

Updated IYS logo. UN-Water

Updated IYS logo. UN-Water

As a follow-up to the 2008 International Year of Sanitation (IYS) there are plans for a virtual scrapbook of IYS activities and a review of sanitation advocacy campaigns commissioned by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. The IYS logo has been updated with a bar of soap and the “timeless”slogan, “Sanitation for All”. These are some of the activities that Clarissa Brocklehurst, Chief of Water and Environmental Sanitation at UNICEF and coordinator of UN-Water’s Task Force on Sanitation, mentioned in an interview with UN-Water. During the IYS,  the Task Force assumed a leadership role in global advocacy and capacity building.

Several countries have  developed specific sanitation policies, as a result of the IYS campaign events, Ms. Brockelhurst said. The United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs (UNDESA) is preparing the Secretary-General’s Report on the IYS.

“In some countries the campaign succeeded in leveraging more funds for sanitation. For example, in Nepal, the Department of Local Infrastructure Development and Agricultural Roads decided to allocate 20 percent budget of its water supply project for sanitation and the national government has allocated US $660,000 for a stand-alone sanitation programme. In Nigeria, budget allocations in some states and at national level have increased for sanitation and hygiene and the fact that the National Council on Water Resources has made 2009 the National Year of Sanitation, clearly show a commitment to improving sanitation nationwide. Reports we have received from China also indicated that the IYS campaign contributed to an increased budget allocation for rural sanitation.”

Clarissa Brocklehurst. UN-Water

Clarissa Brocklehurst. UN-Water

“Some country’s reported that the IYS campaigns had helped bring out about institutional changes in how sanitation is addressed at the national level. In Angola, the government has taken steps to establish a new national technical unit for environmental sanitation within the ministry of environment. In Pakistan, a Water and Sanitation Sector Donor Coordination Group and National Working Group on School Sanitation and Hygiene Education have been established.”

“With funding from the United Kingdom’s Department for International Development (DFID), we have commissioned a new project to be carried out by the German Toilet Organization: The My School Loo Contest, which will use comic strips to educate school children about the importance of sanitation.”

UN-Water’s Task Force on Sanitation is supporting implementation of the recommendations of Ministerial Declaration on Water Supply and Sanitation in Small Rural Settlements in the Black Sea Region. The declaration was one of the ouputs of the recent roundtable organised by the UN Secretary-General’s Advisory Board on Water and Sanitation (UNSGAB).

“The Task Force is also supporting follow up to the other sanitation conferences that took place during IYS, particularly AfricaSan and the eThekwini Declaration.”

Read the full UN-Water interview with Clarissa Brocklehurst or listen below to the audio version.

Interview with Clarissa Brocklehurst (audio)

Advocating for investment in sanitation: is your jury still out?

Imagine standing in front of a group of 12 men and women, summoned to hear the case for and against investment in sanitation. They are non-experts. You are the specialist. You know the importance of sanitation for the dignity and health of millions of people who lack basic facilities. You believe you will do a good job of arguing the case that sanitation is an urgent development priority.

But are you sure? The profile of sanitation was raised during the UN International Year of Sanitation. And much of the stigma about discussion on the disposal of human faeces has been lifted. But are you ready to make the best of that platform – will you convince your jury?

Read morePeter Newborne, ODI blog, 07 April 2009

Nepal: sanitation cartoons in 2008-2009 WASH Calendar

WASH CalendarA popular WASH calendar has been produced in Nepal since 2004/2005. On the occasion of the International Year of Sanitation, 2008 the government desk of the International Year of Sanitation under the Steering Committee for National Sanitation Action suggested to increase distribute WASH Calendar more widely. With the support of the Water Supply and Sanitation Collaborative Council (WSSCC) and WaterAid Nepal, 27,500 copies were published and distributed throughout the country to Government, Nepal WASH Group members and other stakeholders.

More cartoons are available on the WSSCC web site

Nepal: engaging the media for sanitation awareness and advocacy

“The Nepal WASH Coalition is able to leverage media coverage and establish the ties needed to bring lasting change in the sanitation and water supply situation in Nepal. It has successfully increased coverage of sanitation issues in the media, educated communities and villages on the benefits of good hygiene practices, and has been able to convince the Government to endorse the Sanitation Model District Approach programme. The Nepal WASH Coalition also encourages sector stakeholders to come together as a group, in order to voice needs and suggest changes. As it grows in influence, the Nepal WASH Coalition brings much needed attention to a sector that is often shrouded in stigma.”

This is the conclusion of the May 2008 WASH case study on Nepal, one of a series published by the Water Supply and Sanitation Collaborative Council (WSSCC).