Livestream of Bonn WASH Nutrition Forum – November 11 & 12, 2015

The Bonn WASH Nutrition Forum is going to have a livestream on the 11th and 12th November. It will start at 10am CET on the 11th November.

Why should I watch the livestream of the Bonn WASH Nutrition Forum on 11th & 12th November, 10am CET? This innovative forum that will bring WASH experts and their Nutrition Expert counterparts together, but not only in the audience. washnut2015_logo_151020_jr

Overcoming malnutrition is a great challenge that will require true collaboration between the WASH and nutrition sectors. The main aim of the forum is to bring together the relevant experts from both sectors.

We intend to have an effective mix of thematic inputs and discussions during so-called “mirror sessions”. Here, relevant sector professionals in similar positions from both the WASH and Nutrition sector will be asked to present their work / perspective.

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New week NEW BRIEF! Finance Brief N. 8: “A few cents on your water bill: Tana’s (Anatanarivo) surcharge system” By Sylvie Ramanantsoa, Julie Ranaivo and Guy Norman

Tana 001    In Madagascar’s capital Antananarivo (Tana), water bills include various surcharges designed to help finance water and sanitation. In recent years, Water & Sanitation for the Urban Poor (WSUP) has been working with local government and with the utility JIRAMA to optimise the use of these revenues to support water supply improvements in low-income communities. This brief describes how this interesting system works, and considers how it might be further developed.

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Water, Sanitation, Hygiene, and Nutrition in Bangladesh:

Water, Sanitation, Hygiene, and Nutrition in Bangladesh” Can Building Toilets Affect Children’s Growth? 2015.

Authors: Iffat Mahmud and Nkosinathi Mbuya. World Bank.

This report provides a systematic review of the evidence to date, both published and grey literature, on the relationship between water and sanitation and nutrition. bangladesh-wash-1

We also examine the potential impact of improved water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH) on undernutrition. This is the first report that undertakes a thorough review and discussion of WASH and nutrition in Bangladesh.

The report is meant to serve two purposes. First, it synthesizes the results/evidence evolving on the pathway of WASH and undernutrition for use by practitioners working in the nutrition and water and sanitation sectors to stimulate technical discussions and effective collaboration among stakeholders.

Second, this report serves as an advocacy tool, primarily for policy makers, to assist them in formulating a multisectoral approach to tackling the undernutrition problem.

Unilever unveils new film and rural programme about handwashing with soap for newborn survival

Unilever’s health soap, Lifebuoy introduced ‘Chamki’, a compelling new film to raise awareness of the importance of handwashing with soap for new mums as part of Lifebuoy’s Help A Child Reach 5 handwashing programme.

This year, the campaign focuses on a child’s neonatal period (the first 28 days of life). It also coincides with the launch of a partnership with the Children’s Investment Fund Foundation (CIFF) to scale up Lifebuoy’s handwashing programmes in rural Bihar, India.

The newest Help a Child Reach 5 film was developed by Mullen Lowe Group and shot by the famous feature film director, Anand Gandhi. The film showcases the emotional journey of a real pregnant mother and her aspirations for her child.

It highlights the importance of doing something very simple, yet important during pregnancy and early in the child’s life: washing hands with soap.

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University of Maryland celebrates Global Handwashing Day 2015

For the fourth year, students from the Global Public Health Scholars program at the University of Maryland, College Park visited the Center for Young Children (CYC), a laboratory school on the UMD campus. pic2

Children at the CYC arrive in the morning and make their way to the child-sized sinks to wash their hands. They bring the skill home, reminding their families to wash hands after they use the bathroom and before dinner.

Global Public Health Scholars visited the Kindergarten class in the Blue Room, sang handwashing songs, led a handwashing educational activity using the “Glo-Germ,” and worked with the children to make a beautiful Global Handwashing Day banner. pic1

The activity raised awareness about the importance of handwashing for disease prevention and alerted children, college students, and parents about many events happening to celebrate Global Handwashing Day around the world.

Toilet touring in Uganda: experiencing the true spirit of Community-Led Total Sanitation

Patrick England, who recently joined the Global Sanitation Fund secretariat, travelled to Uganda to participate in a learning exchange mission. The mission turned out to be a unique opportunity to experience the true spirit of community-led total sanitation (CLTS). Read about his experiences below.

Representatives from Madagascar’s Fond d’Appui pour l’Assainissement (FAA) programme demonstrating CLTS facilitation in Amuria District. Credit: Patrick England/WSSCC

Representatives from Madagascar’s Fond d’Appui pour l’Assainissement (FAA) programme demonstrating CLTS facilitation in Amuria District. Credit: Patrick England/WSSCC

When I first entered the field of international development, I had no idea that ‘shit’ would become a standard part of my professional vocabulary. But as a Portfolio Support Analyst with the WSSCC’s Global Sanitation Fund (GSF), my mission is to discover and document everything about shit: how communities are dealing with it, and how to support our programme partners to tackle the world’s growing sanitation and hygiene crisis. So in June 2015, I received my first opportunity to become a professional toilet tourist with the GSF during a cross-programme exchange to Uganda.

Just prior to my Ugandan journey, I was working with Concern Universal, the GSF Executing Agency in Nigeria. I supported the development of case studies and lessons learned for the GSF-supported Rural Sanitation and Hygiene Promotion in Nigeria programme, which carries out Community-Led Total Sanitation (CLTS) activities in the south-east of the country. Similar to Uganda, Nigeria’s GSF-supported programme is fully owned and implemented by government agencies. However, for local officials and civil servants, the participatory, spontaneous, and dynamic ethos of CLTS often runs in direct contrast to decades of enforcing toilet construction. Not only must CLTS trigger improved sanitation and hygiene behaviour in communities themselves, but it must also trigger government authorities to create enabling environments for communities to climb the sanitation ladder.

CLTS learning journeys converge: the GSF cross-programme exchange
Dazed after two days of travel from Calabar to Kampala, I met my new Uganda colleagues in the rural district of Pallisa. Accompanying them was a delegation from Madagascar’s GSF-supported programme. While much could be written on this band of Malagasy medical doctors-cum-sanitation crusaders, let’s just say that they definitely know their ‘shit’. For them, CLTS isn’t just an approach to increase sanitation coverage and reduce under-five mortality; it’s an action-affirmative philosophy that underpins a movement to improve the health of entire countries. Most importantly, this movement must be wholly owned by communities themselves – a point continuously emphasized throughout our district visits in Uganda.

Map of districts visited in Uganda, based on image retrieved on

Map of districts visited in Uganda, based on image retrieved on

Our exchange crossed the entire country – from the shores of Lake Victoria to the jungles along the border with the Democratic Republic of the Congo – working alongside District Health Office staff to improve their CLTS approach. Led by the Malagasy doctors, each visit comprised a systematic review of existing practices, a hands-on demonstration of best-practice triggering and follow-up, and a critical self-analysis by health staff to enhance their community engagement. As was the case in Nigeria where decades of latrine enforcement and health sensitization failed to achieve any notable impact, this intensive learning process focused on ‘de-programming’ the old behaviours of local government facilitators.

Compared to Nigeria, where 25 percent of the population practices open defecation, Uganda has a relatively high level of sanitation coverage (where seven percent practice open defecation)[1]. This was made evident by the number of well-built latrines I observed during our visits to rural communities. Until then, I never entertained the notion that a toilet could be beautiful: walls carefully smoothed and polished, meticulously patterned with charcoal and red mud paint, all topped with round thatch roofs. One elderly woman in Koboko District proudly demonstrated how she used a local weed to give her latrine’s mud floor a glossy sheen. However, the presence of toilets – even those ornately designed – did not mean that these communities were open defecation free (ODF). These latrines frequently went unused, especially during planting and harvesting seasons, while a lack of adequate fly-proof covers and handwashing facilities meant that these community members were still unintentionally eating their own, and others’, shit.

Read the full blog on the WSSCC website

Recent WASH studies on NTDS, shared sanitation, detection of E. coli

The Effect of Hygiene-Based Lymphedema Management in Lymphatic Filariasis-Endemic Areas: A Systematic Review and Meta-analysis. PLoS NTDs, Oct 2015. Authors: Meredith E. Stocks, Matthew C. Freeman, David G. Addiss.

Full text:

For people who already have lymphedema, WHO recommends simple hygiene-based measures that include skin care and limb movement. Yet only a small proportion of those with LF-related lymphedema have been trained in these measures. To determine the effectiveness of hygiene-based lymphedema management, we reviewed the scientific literature. Overall, use of hygiene-based measures was associated with 60% lower odds of inflammatory episodes, known as “acute attacks,” in the affected limb. Hygiene is also effective for managing LF-related lymphedema and reducing suffering caused by acute attacks. Training people with lymphedema in hygiene-based interventions should be a priority for LF programs everywhere.

Evaluation of an Inexpensive Growth Medium for Direct Detection of Escherichia coli in Temperate and Sub-Tropical Waters. PLoS One, Oct 2015. Authors: Robert E. S. Bain , Claire Woodall, John Elliott, Benjamin F. Arnold, Rosalind Tung, Robert Morley, Martella du Preez, Jamie K. Bartram, Anthony P. Davis, Stephen W. Gundry, Stephen Pedley

Full text:

We developed a new low-cost growth medium, aquatest (AT), and validated its use for the direct detection of E. coli in temperate and sub-tropical drinking waters using IDEXX Quanti-Tray®. AT is reliable and accurate for the detection of E. coli in temperate and subtropical drinking water. The composition of the new medium is reported herein and can be used freely.

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