The future is urban, the future is African (and implications for sanitation)

The future is urban, the future is African (and implications for sanitation). WASH Economics, January 9, 2018.

UNPD brought out their 2017 update to World Population Prospects (WPP) last summer. One striking graph from that got me digging into the data into the 2014 World Urbanisation Prospects (WUP) data.

This may seem slightly off-topic for a WASH economics blog, but understanding population trends is crucial in economics.

For costing purposes, you’ll often find yourself multiplying a per household or per person unit cost, by a number of households or people. future-is-african

That’s true whether you’re estimating the costs of reaching the SDGs at the global level, carrying out strategic financial planning at the  national level, or understanding how to finance a sanitation master plan at the city level.

So, the future is African. This becomes obvious, when looking at the figure below from WPP 2017. A lot can happen between now and 2100, but the trend for the African continent is striking. Even at 2050 (not that far away, scarily) the absolute numbers are striking, with Africa seeing a ~150% increase on its 2010 total population.

Read the complete article.

Update from the South Asian Conference on Sanitation (SACOSAN VII)

Update from the South Asian Conference on Sanitation (SACOSAN VII)

Conference Dates – 10-12 April 2018 in Islamabad with the 13th April being reserved for a field visit. SACOSAN-CALL-FOR-PAPERS

  • 30 January – acceptance of abstracts (300 words)
  • 9 February – call for full papers (Following review by technical committee)
  • 9 March – submission of full papers

Concept notes for side events should be submitted by 9th February for consideration.

We would like to encourage people to visit the website and register for the event so that the visa application processes can be facilitated in a timely ,manner.

Menstrual hygiene management in humanitarian situations

NEWS ARTICLES

Nepal Fact Sheet: Safaa Paani (WASH Recovery) Program. USAID, December 2017. Some of the key outcomes are to: Map water sources using GIS technology across the two project districts; Renovate or construct 200 community water supply systems in earthquake-affected communities; and Promote sanitation, hygiene and menstrual hygiene management at temporary learning centers and schools

Menstrual Cups and Reusable Pads Are Literally Changing Lives Uganda’s Refugee Camps. Global Citizen, December 2017. The main goal of WoMena’s pilot program was to assess whether menstrual cups and reusable pads are feasible options for displaced women and girls.

For refugee women, periods a dangerous, shameful time. Reuters, March 2017. For refugee women, fleeing their homes for safety, the challenges of a period can be even greater. “There’s no dignity in having your period when you’re a refugee,” Terri Harris, of the Muslim women-led development charity Global One told the Thomson Reuters Foundation.

REPORTS/JOURNAL ARTICLES

A Toolkit for Integrating MHM into Humanitarian Response: The Full Guide. Columbia University and International Rescue Committee, 2017. The toolkit was designed to support a range of humanitarian actors involved in the planning and delivery of emergency responses.

Transitions into puberty and access to sexual and reproductive health information in two humanitarian settings: a cross sectional survey of very young adolescents from Somalia and Myanmar. Conflict and Health, 2017. Very young adolescents (VYA) in humanitarian settings are largely neglected in terms of sexual and reproductive health (SRH). This study describes the characteristics of VYA aged 10-14 years in two humanitarian settings, focusing on transitions into puberty and access to SRH information.

Understanding the menstrual hygiene management challenges facing displaced girls and women: findings from qualitative assessments in Myanmar and Lebanon. Confl Health. 2017 Oct 16. Key findings included that there was insufficient access to safe and private facilities for MHM coupled with displacement induced shifts in menstrual practices by girls and women.

Menstrual Health in RHINO Camp Refugee Settlement, West Nile Uganda. WoMena Uganda, 2017. With support from WoMena Uganda, ZOA implemented a MHM pilot intervention in Rhino Camp Refugee Settlement to assess the acceptability of introducing menstrual cups and reusable pads as part of their Teach Me More school-based programme. The pilot also aimed to assess the feasibility of following guidelines for safe use and care of the reusable products.

Menstrual Hygiene Management (MHM) for Education in Emergencies (EIE): A Study for Plan International Tanzania. PLAN International, September 2017. The study’s four objectives were to: • Identify the meaning of menstruation in the daily lives of adolescent girls in Nduta Camp; • Assess the impact of MHM on adolescent girls’ school attendance in Nduta Camp; • Assess the support resources (parents, teachers, community) align with MHM promotes the adolescent girls’ school attendance in Nduta Camp.

Mitigating Threats to Girls’ Education in Conflict Affected Contexts: Evidence Review. UNGEI, October 2017. Though there is scarce literature about this issue from conflict-affected contexts, we also include in this section a brief discussion of WASH and MHM facilities in schools, as these are very important for adolescent girls to feel safe, secure, and respected at school.

How can Humanitarian Organisations Encourage More Women in Surge? ActionAid, April 2017. Personal hygiene: The most critical thing that this study can advise in relation to menstrual hygiene is to encourage all humanitarian organisations to create safe spaces for women and men to talk about periods and toilet access.

Menstrual Health and Hygiene Management in Nepal. PSI Nepal, 2017. This scoping review and preliminary mapping of Menstrual Health and Hygiene Management (MHM) in Nepal is one of the first of its kind in Nepal. Through this review, we studied in-depth the MHM situation in Nepal, bottlenecks and opportunities for the way forward.

The Last Taboo: Research on menstrual hygiene management in the Pacific: Solomon Islands, Fiji, and Papua New Guinea. Australian Government, Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT), September 2017. The study was undertaken in 2016-17 and focuses on menstruation and how it is managed by women and adolescent girls in Solomon Islands (SI), Fiji and Papua New Guinea (PNG). The purpose of the study was to explore the challenges experienced by women and girls in managing their menstruation.

What is the scope for addressing menstrual hygiene management in complex humanitarian emergencies? A global review. Waterlines, July 2016. This global review assessed the landscape of MHM practice, policy, and research within the field of humanitarian response.

Quiet Heroes in the Fight against Ebola – Global Waters

Quiet Heroes in the Fight against Ebola. Global Waters, January 3, 2018.

While the Ebola crisis was at its peak in Liberia, a small group of water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH) entrepreneurs helped in a significant way by repairing hand pumps in clinics and other health facilities in some of the country’s hardest-hit counties.

By restoring access to water — not only for drinking, but also for infection prevention and control — these WASH entrepreneurs ensured that facilities had the resources they needed to promote handwashing and safe hygiene practices that could help combat the spread of the disease.

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Newly graduated WASH entrepreneurs prepare to deploy to their target communities. Photo credit: Global Communities Liberia

Liberia’s Bong, Lofa, and Nimba counties were some of the areas most affected during the Ebola crisis. The communities in these counties are largely rural and hard to reach. Roads and infrastructure are poor and government services are limited.

In these rural communities access to water and sanitation facilities are extreme challenges. According to the latest data from the WHO/UNICEF Joint Monitoring Programme for Water, Sanitation and Hygiene, nearly 80 percent of rural Liberians do not have adequate sanitation facilities. At the same time, 47 percent of rural residents do not have safe drinking water sources.

Read the complete article.

BBC News – Menstruating girls banned from crossing Ghana river

Menstruating girls banned from crossing Ghana river. BBC News, January 11, 2018.

Ghanaian schoolgirls have been banned from crossing a river while they are menstruating – and on Tuesdays.

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Girls living near Kyekyewerein (not pictured) are affected by the ban

The ban, apparently given by a local river god, has outraged children’s activists, especially as girls must cross the river to reach school.

It means girls in the Upper Denkyira East district, in the Central Region, could miss out on their education.

Sub-Saharan Africa is already struggling to keep girls in school during their periods.

The UN’s scientific and education organisation, Unesco, estimates one in 10 girls in the region does not attend school because they are menstruating, while a World Bank report notes that 11.5m Ghanaian women lack the appropriate hygiene and sanitation management facilities needed.

Read the complete article.

Satellites Predict a Cholera Outbreak Weeks in Advance

Satellites Predict a Cholera Outbreak Weeks in Advance. Scientific American, January 3, 2018.

A test in Yemen showed satellite data could foresee an outbreak four weeks before it exploded 

cholera

Vibrio cholerae. Credit: Getty Images

Orbiting satellites can warn us of bad weather and help us navigate to that new taco joint. Scientists are also using data satellites to solve a worldwide problem: predicting cholera outbreaks.

Cholera infects millions of people each year, leading to thousands of deaths. Often communities do not realize an epidemic is underway until infected individuals swarm hospitals. Advanced warning for impending epidemics could help health workers prepare for the onslaught—stockpiling rehydration supplies, medicines and vaccines—which can save lives and quell the disease’s spread.

Back in May 2017 a team of scientists used satellite information to assess whether an outbreak would occur in Yemen, and they ended up predicting an outburst that spread across the country in June.

Read the complete article.

Frontiers 2017: Emerging Issues of Environmental Concern

Frontiers 2017: Emerging Issues of Environmental Concern. UN Environment, 2018.

From antimicrobial resistance to off-grid solar: Frontiers 2017 explores the newest environmental issues facing the planet. Frontiers2017-cover-d8

How does our careless disposal of antimicrobial drugs produce bacteria that can resist them? Why are Marine Protected Areas vital to achieving the Sustainable Development Goals? Can off-grid solar plug the energy gap for cities in the developing world?

UN Environment experts will address these and other emerging issues with the launch of Frontiers 2017, its latest annual report on the most novel environmental challenges facing the planet.

The report covers six key emerging issues: the environmental dimension of antimicrobial resistance; nanomaterials; Marine Protected Areas and sustainable development; sand and dust storms; off-grid solar solutions; and environmental displacement.