Announcing WSSCC’s 2017 Webinar Series #1: Sanitation-related Psychosocial Stress and the Effects on Women and Girls

WSSCC will celebrate Women’s Week for International Women’s Day 2017 from March 6 – 10. Ahead of this, a webinar session will explore the ways in which women experience stress during their sanitation routine: Thursday 2 March 2017 from 2pm – 3pm (CET) (8-9am New York; 1-2pm London; 2-3pm Brussels; 3-4pm Johannesburg; 4-5pm Nairobi; 6:30-7:30pm Mumbai)

REGISTRATION:

Please register here: bit.ly/2lrsUvd

Do you know what the main stressors are for women and girls during their daily sanitation routines?  How do they cope with them?

On March 2nd, the Water Supply and Sanitation Collaborative Council will host the first in a series of four webinars for 2017. This session will discuss the psychological, social, and health impacts of sanitation routines among women of reproductive age in urban slums, rural villages and indigenous villages.

Using the life-course approach, during the hour-long session participants will be guided to understand the influence of age, context and social processes on a woman’s experience and family life, and how those factors collectively impact the experience of sanitation. The conceptual model of sanitation-related psychosocial stress will also be shared.

Available on the Skype for Business platform, the session will be presented by Dr. Kathleen O’Reilly, Associate Professor at Texas A&M University, and Dr. Krushna Chandra Sahoo from the Asian Institute of Public Health. The Moderator is Archana Patkar, Programme Manager, Water Supply and Sanitation Collaborative Council.

The webinar series is open to governments, experts, practitioners and trainers in sanitation and hygiene; academia and research institutions and civil society partners.

A session will take place every quarter during the year in the form of an hour-long webinar with invited experts, in English. The format is a 15-minute presentation followed by interactive Q&A sessions.

Reading ahead:  If you would like to know more about the topic ahead of the discussion, here are two relevant readings.

  1. Sanitation-related psychosocial stress: A grounded theory study of women across the life-course in Odisha, India
  2. Briefing note on “Social and psychological impact of limited access to sanitation”

To learn more, visit our website wsscc.org.

USAID Launches Municipal Waste Recycling Program in Southeast Asia

USAID Launches Municipal Waste Recycling Program in Southeast Asia. by Darren Manning, Urban Development Officer, USAID’s E3/Land and Urban Office, Urban Links, February 2017.

Asian countries are responsible for more than half of the plastic waste in the world’s oceans. To help address this critical issue, USAID has launched a new program that focuses on identifying and scaling innovations to improve municipal waste recycling in three Asian countries — Sri Lanka, Vietnam, and the Philippines — which are among the world’s top five producers of plastics waste.

urbanlinks

Outside of Manila, Philippines, thousands of tons of seaweed, garbage and sewage were washed by floods into the streets of low-lying poorer suburbs. Photo Credit: Arlynn Aquino/EU

Improving the management of municipal waste in these countries, which border two oceans, is imperative to reducing plastics pollution that threatens human health and adversely affects the marine environment.

In late 2016, I traveled to the Philippines to meet with local organizations and finalize work plans for the Municipal Waste Management Recycling Program with implementing partner Development Innovations Group (DIG).

The Municipal Waste Recycling Program (MWRP) is a four-year, $9 million initiative to address the global problem of marine plastics pollution.

Implemented under USAID’s Making Cities Work program, MWRP will provide $3.5 million in grants and technical assistance to support promising municipal waste recycling efforts in Asia, evaluate their effectiveness, and make recommendations for future USAID investments in the sector.

Read the complete article.

Recent WASH research

Community Based Problem Solving on Water Issues: Cross-Border “Priority Initiatives” of the Good Water Neighbors (GWN) ProjectEcoPeace, November 2016. This publication describes the 2016 efforts of EcoPeace’s GWN project team to identify environmental challenges and provide feasible solutions for “Priority Initiatives” in participating communities in Palestine, Jordan, and Israel.

A Long Way to Go—Estimates of Combined Water, Sanitation and Hygiene Coverage for 25 Sub-Saharan African CountriesPLoS One, February 2017. The authors state that estimates in this study help to quantify the scale of progress required to achieve universal water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH) access as envisaged under the water and sanitation Sustainable Development Goal (SDG). Monitoring and reporting changes in the proportion of the national population with access to WASH may be useful in focusing WASH policy and investments toward the areas of greatest need.

Recycling and Reuse of Treated Wastewater in Urban India: A Proposed Advisory and Guidance DocumentWater and Sanitation ProgramInternational Water Management Institute, 2016. This document on wastewater recycling and reuse in urban India focuses on identifying the economic benefits of wastewater recycling from the perspective of public spending. The note also provides supporting information on the evolution and current practices of wastewater recycling internationally.

Participatory Science and Innovation for Improved Sanitation and Hygiene: Process and Outcome Evaluation of Project SHINE, a School-Based Intervention in Rural TanzaniaBMC Public Health, February 2017. The Project SHINE model shows promise as an innovative capacity-building approach and for engagement and empowerment of youth and communities to develop locally sustainable strategies to improve sanitation and hygiene.

Business Models for Fecal Sludge ManagementInternational Water Management Institute, 2016. Based on the analysis of more than 40 fecal sludge management (FSM) cases from Asia, Africa, and Latin America, this report shows opportunities as well as bottlenecks that FSM is facing from an institutional and entrepreneurial perspective.

Chickens Don’t Use Toilets: Why Managing Animal Feces Helps Children Grow TallerWorld Bank Water Blog, February 2017. The authors recommend that the predominant WASH focus on reducing exposure to human feces needs updating by including animal feces.

Nonrandomized Trial of Feasibility and Acceptability of Strategies for Promotion of Soapy Water as a Handwashing Agent in Rural BangladeshAmerican Journal of Tropical Medicine & Hygiene, February 2017. Soapy water may increase habitual handwashing by addressing barriers of cost and availability of handwashing agents near water sources. Further research should inform optimal strategies to scale-up soapy water as a handwashing agent to study health impact.

WASH and the Systems Approach

Increasing Interest in the Agenda for Change and Investments in the Systems ApproachIRC WASH, December 2016. IRC’s CEO Patrick Moriarty discusses key takeaways from the 2016 UNC Water and Health Conference and the growing number of individuals and organizations becoming aware of the necessity of strengthening national WASH systems—and of adopting a systems-based approach. It represents an important step forward that so many in the WASH sector are moving toward strengthening systems rather than just providing hardware.

Systems Thinking: Unlocking the Sustainable Development GoalsEco-Business, October 2016. The world has made some good progress toward advancing the SDGs, but a key piece is missing from these efforts, says Forum for the Future Deputy Chief Executive Stephanie Draper. That is: systems thinking.

Systems Strengthening Thematic Keynote at the UNC Water and Health Conference 2016. (PowerPoint presentation). Heather Skilling, DAI, October 2016. In this presentation, Ms. Skilling discusses her WASH experiences and states that several characteristics of a systems-based approach are: a shift away from fixed, long-term planning to more iterative and adaptive planning based on learning and experimentation; a focus on multi-stakeholder approaches and co-creation with local stakeholders; and a movement away from piecemeal project-by-project progress and toward sector change.

Can Agent-Based Simulation Models Help Us to Improve Services in Complex WASH Systems? IRC WASH, December 2016. In this blog the author discusses the use of a complementary modeling tool to understand and analyze complex social interactions in WASH: an agent-based modeling (ABM) tool. ABM can help practitioners to: diagnose the system; explore the effects of policy interventions; and discuss with partners and clients how the theory of complex systems affects them.

Towards ‘Sustainable’ Sanitation: Challenges and Opportunities in Urban Areas.Sustainability, December 2016. Sustainable sanitation is not a single technology or specific limited sanitation system design, but rather an approach where a broad set of criteria needs to be taken into consideration to achieve universal and equitable access to services over the long-term in a particular context.

Improving Health in Cities Through Systems Approaches for Urban Water ManagementEnvironmental Health, March 2016. This paper reviews links between water and health in cities and describes how the application of four main elements of systems approaches—analytic methods to deal with complexity, interdisciplinarity, transdisciplinarity, and multi-scale thinking—can yield benefits for health in the urban water management context.

33rd AGUASAN Workshop: “Circular economy – transforming waste into resources”

The 2017 AGUASAcircular-economyN Workshop will focus on analysing successful and failed approaches for transitioning from linear to circular water and sanitation models.

The workshop takes place from June 26 to 30, 2017 in Spiez, Switzerland.

Circular economy has great potential to drive the Water and Sanitation 2030 Agenda forward because it aligns directly with the Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 6.3 of improving water quality and substantially increasing recycling and safe reuse globally and SDG 6.4 of substantially increasing water-use efficiency across all sectors and ensuring sustainable withdrawals.

Key questions and issues: 

  • What does the circular economy concept entail?
  • Which flows are relevant?
  • Which stakeholders need to be involved and how?
  • How can demand for recovered products be created?
  • In which context do these stakeholders act?
  • What are the drivers and barriers influencing the transition towards a circular economy?
  • Which circular economy approaches can we learn from for overcoming the identified
  • How should change from linear to circular water and sanitation be managed?
  • How can health risks be managed?
  • How to address public perceptions associated with recycling and reusing of human waste?

Please find the invitation letter, announcement and pre-registration on the website: www.aguasan.ch. Registrations will be accepted until March 19th, 2017.

AGUASAN is an interdisciplinary Swiss Community of Practice (CoP) that brings together a broad range of specialists to promote wider and deeper understanding of key water and sanitation management issues in developing and transition countries. It builds on committed sector professionals from various specialised institutions involved in Swiss development cooperation, humanitarian aid and research. Since 1984, the CoP provides an exemplary, vibrant and most pertinent exchange platform and think-tank serving the water sector, and constitutes an essential link in the innovation and knowledge management strategy of the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC). Besides convening quarterly knowledge sharing events, every year members of the CoP organise an international AGUASAN Workshop in Switzerland

 

The Business of Sanitation for All – Toilet Board Coalition

Global Toilet Business Innovation and Investment Summit, 2016. Toilet Board Coalition.

It was a special honour to host over 250 leading businesses and stakeholders this past November in Mumbai at the Global Toilet Business Innovation and Investment Summit.

We have ventured to capture the energy in the room in a brief report sharing the highlights and themes throughout the three days, Nov 15-17 2016.

Please take a moment to take a look and discover the inspiring businesses, entrepreneurs, investors, and ecosystem enablers accelerating THE BUSINESS OF SANITATION FOR ALL!

 

 

Safe toilets help flush out disease in Cambodia’s floating communities

Safe toilets help flush out disease in Cambodia’s floating communities. The Guardian, February 15, 2017.

Open defecation in villages on Tonlé Sap lake contributes to sickness, pollution and drownings. Now, a pathogen-filtering toilet looks set to change lives

An excerpt: Taber Hand, founder and director of Wetlands Work, says the concentration of pathogens like E coli can fluctuate from about 200-400 units per 100ml of water to as much as 4,000 units per 100ml in the dry season. When the levels of pathogens are that concentrated, he says, “it’s septic”.

handypod

The HandyPod system behind Hakley Ke’s floating house in Phat Sanday commune, on the Tonlé Sap lake. Photograph: Lauren Crothers for the Guardian

In 2009, he began designing the HandyPod; a simple, two-container system that filters pathogens out of wastewater. He says the version in use by nine households and a school today, priced at $125 (£100), is the most cost-effective.

The system is gravitational. With each flush – achieved by pouring a ladle of water into the toilet bowl – waste is collected in the first of two containers, where it settles and is broken down using anaerobic processes over a three-day period, and the pathogen reduction begins.

The second barrel is packed with small pieces of polystyrene, which triggers a process that reduces the levels of the remaining bacteria. Each flush also forces the newly treated water back into the river, where it will pass the test for safe levels of pathogens for recreational water just one metre beyond the discharge point.

Read the complete article.