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Frontiers of CLTS Issue 4: Sustainability and CLTS- Taking Stock

Frontiers of CLTS Issue 4: Sustainability and CLTS- Taking Stock, 2015.

Sustainability is without doubt one of the most burning subject matters that subsumes many of the issues that we are seeing in CLTS and wider WASH practice. clts

There have been several useful studies on sustainability that have highlighted some of the different aspects as well as the complexities involved. However, it is unclear how much of the learning from these studies has been built into current and future programming and practice.

Based on existing research and our own understanding, this issue of Frontiers of CLTS is an attempt at an up to date synthesis of where we are at the beginning of 2015.

In the issue, we identify some priority areas for learning: How to phase in sanitation marketing; Post-ODF engagement of government, NGOS, donors and others; How to ensure equity and inclusion; How to transform social norms; Monitoring, learning, changing.

Waterlines, Jan 2015 issue on Menstrual Hygiene Management

WATERLINES – JANUARY 2015 (Complete issue)

Selected articles: 

Guest editorial: tackling the stigma and gender marginalization related to menstruation via WASH in schools programmes (abstract/order info)
Menstrual hygiene management has been defined as: ‘Women and adolescent girls using a clean menstrual management material to absorb or collect blood that can be changed in privacy as often as necessary for the duration of the menstruation period, using soap and water for washing the body as required, and having access to facilities to dispose of used menstrual management materials’ (UNICEF and WHO, 2014). However, menstrual hygiene is not just about the management of the menstrual period but also the need to address societal beliefs and taboos surrounding the issue. waterlines

Until recently, the development sector including WASH (water, sanitation and hygiene) had not explored and attempted to address the challenges related to Menstrual Hygiene Management (MHM), an important issue affecting the health, dignity and privacy of millions of girls and women on a daily basis. It is great to have a whole issue of Waterlines dedicated to MHM, as it will help us, the maledominated, engineering-based sector, to increase our understanding of this aspect of the development work we do on a daily basis.

Putting the men into menstruation: the role of men and boys in community menstrual hygiene management (full text)
This paper examines how men and boys have an essential role in effective menstrual hygiene programmes and describes an initiative to engage men and boys in Uttar Pradesh, India. As a result of the initiative, men and boys have begun to talk about menstruation more freely and are better able to support the MHM needs of women and girls within the household, community, and school.

Adolescent schoolgirls’ experiences of menstrual cups and pads in rural western Kenya: a qualitative study (full text)
A randomized controlled feasibility study was conducted among 14–16-year-old girls, in 30 primary schools in rural western Kenya, to examine acceptability, use, and safety of menstrual cups or sanitary pads. Focus group discussions (FGDs) were conducted to evaluate girls’ perceptions and experiences six months after product introduction.

Mainstreaming menstrual hygiene management in schools through the play-based approach: lessons learned from Ghana (full text)
The study objective was to identify and document the effectiveness of the play-based approach in promoting menstrual hygiene management (MHM) in schools and share lessons learned. The study used a mix of approaches including qualitative and quantitative techniques. The author carried out an exploratory evaluation on the promotion of MHM activities as part of WASH in Schools programmes in 120 public schools in Ghana. Comparison was drawn between 60 schools currently using the play-based approach in promoting MHM, and 60 schools which are not using the play-based approach.

Developing games as a qualitative method for researching menstrual hygiene management in rural Bolivia (abstract/order info)
In 2012, Emory University and UNICEF conducted a multi-country formative study to gain a global perspective of girls’ experiences. A compendium of tools was created to ensure investigation of common themes across all settings. This paper describes the process of adapting the focus group discussion (FGD) tool for Bolivia into a board game as a method to ease girls’ discomfort discussing menstruation and elicit richer data.

All we want are toilets inside our homes!

This article can be downloaded/viewed free of charge for the next 10 days

All we want are toilets inside our homes!” The critical role of sanitation in the lives of urban poor adolescent girls inBengaluru, India. Environment and Urbanization, April 2015. by Anupama Nallari.

This paper describes how lack of access to adequate sanitation facilities affects the lives of adolescent girls in urban poor India. It draws specifically on the experiences of four adolescent girls, each living in one of four settlements in Bengaluru, India, and conversations with a larger group of girls.

Findings reveal that where sanitation facilities are sorely lacking, adolescent girls face many deprivations (education, free time, privacy and independent mobility) and risks (sexual harassment and assault, health risks, etc.), and that this inadequacy can be a structural pathway for cyclical gender-based disempowerment and injustice.

 

Unilever to launch world’s first Toilet Academy in Vietnam

Unilever to launch world’s first Toilet Academy in Vietnam | Source: The Guardian, Dec 2014 |

First Domestos Toilet Academy opened in Vietnam

Unilever is also pioneering an innovative approach to the provision of sanitation, through its continued partnership with the World Toilet Organization, to launch the world’s first Domestos Toilet Academy in Vietnam. This academy will provide the business skills and training necessary for local entrepreneurs to source and supply latrines to their local communities – providing jobs and a boost to the economy, and at the same time promoting the importance of safe and hygienic sanitation. The Toilet Academy programme aims to be a sustainable and long-term solution to sanitation that benefits local society and helps stimulate local economy.

 For 2.5 billion people across the developing world, having no access to even the most basic sanitation is a reality faced every day Photograph: Ahmed Jallanzo/EPA

For 2.5 billion people across the developing world, having no access to even the most basic sanitation is a reality faced every day Photograph: Ahmed Jallanzo/EPA

Dr Nguyen Thi Kim Tien, Minister of Health Vietnam said: “Currently, many countries, including Vietnam, are still facing lots of difficulties and challenges. Challenges of globalization as well as environmental pollution, population growth and urbanization have impacted the sanitation crisis. In Vietnam, the Government has put strong emphasis on stimulating and promoting the “Patriotic Hygiene Movement” to mobilize all management agencies, organizations at all levels and entire nation to join hands in improving hygiene and sanitation as this is essential in the current context.”

“The active participation of businesses like Unilever, helping improve health and hygiene for communities is greatly appreciated and widely acknowledged. The launch of the Toilet Academy clearly demonstrates Unilever’s enormous effort and will positively contribute to improve sanitary conditions for Vietnamese people.”

Read the complete article.

BBC News – Poor water and hygiene ‘kills mothers and newborns’

Poor water and hygiene ‘kills mothers and newborns’ | By Smitha Mundasad, Health reporter, BBC News, Dec 13, 2014.

Many mothers and newborns are dying because of a lack of sanitation, safe water and hygiene while giving birth, leading health experts have warned.

They say the lack of such basic facilities is hindering the success of other interventions to improve the health of newborn babies.

In some clinics in Tanzania pregnant women are asked to bring their own water supplies

In some clinics in Tanzania pregnant women are asked to bring their own water supplies

They’ve called on governments and agencies to focus more on the link between sanitation and saving lives.

Sanitation ‘ignored’

They say that while the importance of hygiene – for example, hand washing – is being recognised in some places, much less consideration is given to the complete package of safe water, hygiene and sanitation.

In some cases sanitation – toilets and facilities to dispose of waste – is being ignored.

Nearly 40% of health facilities in 54 low-income countries do not have reliable clean water, according to the World Health Organization.

The report suggests that many efforts to improve newborn health focus on specific measures, sometimes at the expense of these basic facilities.

And it argues that the lack of ways to dispose of waste safely could hamper the success of other interventions.

The experts behind the report say governments and agencies should pay much greater attention to the link between sanitation and saving mothers’ and babies’ lives.

SCA and WSSCC partner to break silence around menstruation

Geneva, 17 November 2014 – SCA, a leading global hygiene and forest products company, and the Geneva-based Water Supply and Sanitation Collaborative Council (WSSCC), the only United Nations body devoted solely to the sanitation and hygiene needs of vulnerable and marginalized people, have today entered into an innovative new partnership to break the silence around menstruation for women and girls around the world. SCA and WSSCC will jointly work to educate on menstrual issues and the importance of good hygiene.

The parties announced the partnership in Cape Town, South Africa, in connection with Team SCA’s first stop-over in the Volvo Ocean Race round the world competition. During the Cape Town stop-over, Team SCA attended a menstrual hygiene workshop with girls and women from the townships of Khayelitsha and Gugaletu, where experts from WSSCC, the Volunteer Centre (a Cape Town NGO), and SCA led a training session and discussion of the challenges the women face in managing their periods.

The partnership will include actions during, and between, the race stopovers until June 2015. These include Brazil (Itajai), China (Sanya), New Zealand (Auckland), Portugal (Lisbon), South Africa (Cape Town), Sweden (Gothenburg), The Netherlands (The Hague), United Arab Emirates (Abu Dhabi) and the USA (Newport).

Continue reading

My toilet: global stories from women and girls

You are invited to view an exciting new exhibition by WSUP, launched to mark World Toilet Day.

My Toilet documents women and girls and their toilets to build a visual representation of the day to day reality and the effect this has on their lives, both positive and negative.

Keyla, 4, by her toilet in Bolivar, Ecuador. Photography Karla Gachet. Panos Pictures for WSUP.

Keyla, 4, by her toilet in Bolivar, Ecuador. Photo: Karla Gachet, Panos Pictures for WSUP.

The images and stories show that, although the type of toilet changes from country to country, the impacts have recurring themes. Having can mean a better chance of education, employment, dignity, safety, status and more. Wherever you are in the world, a toilet equals far more than just a toilet.

Get involved on social media!
Help spread this message by sharing a picture of yourself holding up a sign with the hashtag #ToiletEquals followed by a word, or a few words, to describe what having a toilet equals for you and for millions of others around the world. All the tweets and pictures will be shown on the My Toilet website.

Visit the exhibition!
Images from 20 countries, spanning every continent, will be exhibited at The Royal Opera Arcade Gallery, London SW1Y 4UY. The gallery is open to the public from 17 – 22 November 2014, 10am – 5pm daily. Entry is free. We hope to see you there!