Tag Archives: Kamal Kar

Q&A: Kamal Kar on ending open defecation

Q&A: Kamal Kar on ending open defecation. Devex, November 21, 2017.

PHNOM PENH — There are 13 years to go to reach the Sustainable Development Goals, including SDG 6.2, which mandates the end of open defecation. In the two years since the SDGs launched, only one developing country — Bangladesh — has reached the mark. That leaves 892 million people in scores of countries who are still practicing open defecation. Across the globe, some 4.5 billion people have no access to a safely managed toilet.  kar

Life without a toilet is more than an inconvenience. Open defecation increases the incidents of diarrhea, cholera, malnutrition, and more, raising the rates of stunting, disease, and death. That, in turn, impacts everything from productivity to economic growth. In 2015, Oxford Economics and WaterAid estimated the global cost to the economy of poor sanitation to be $222.9 billion.

For Dr. Kamal Kar, the founder of Community Led Total Sanitation, the next few years will prove a make-or-break time for the issue. “In the next four or five years of SDG, we at least have to have two, three, or four open-defecation-free nations, otherwise forget the dream of ODF world by 2030,” said Kar.

Read the complete article.

Kiribati’s North Tarawa declared first open defecation free island in the Pacific

Everyone on North Tarawa now has access to improved sanitation. Photo: ABC Radio Australia / UNICEF Pacific.

North Tarawa in Kiribati is the first island in the Pacific to be declared open defecation free, thanks to the “Kiriwatsan I Project”. The Ministry of Public Works is implementing this project with technical support from UNICEF and funding from the European Union.

North Tarawa is made up of a string of islets with a combined population of 6,102 (2010) and a land area of 15.26 sq.km.  Previously about 64 per cent of people used the beaches and mangroves for defecation and dumping their rubbish.

UNICEF spokeswoman Nuzhat Shahzadi says that diarrhoeal diseases cause 15 per cent of the deaths of children under five in Kiribati.

In March 2013, North Tarawa adopted the Community-Led Total Sanitation (CLTS) approach following a training of trainers course conducted by Dr Kamal Kar. The CLTS pioneer wrote that he had convinced Kiribati President Anote Tong to set December 2015 as the target date for the whole nation to become open defecation free.

The villagers of North Tarawa dig shallow pits and use local materials like brick and coconut leaves to build the toilet superstructure. They keep water and soap in one corner. After using the toilet, the villagers sprinkle ash to stop the smell and flies getting in, and then keep it covered.

Ms Shahzadi said that the women and girls were very happy that no longer have to go out on the beach in the middle of the night if they need to use the toilet.

Source: UNICEF, 11 May 2013 ; Radio New Zealand International, 13 May 2013 ; ABC Radio Australia, 14 May 2013

Kamal Kar – 2011 presentation on the scope and challenges of CLTS

Kamal Kar in Foreign Policy magazine’s Top 100 Global Thinkers list

Dr, Kamal Kar

CLTS pioneer Dr. Kamal Kar features in Foreign Policy magazine’s Top 100 Global Thinkers list published in December 2010. He is ranked at place 84 “for doing the world’s dirty work”. First place in the top 100 is reserved for billionaire philanthropists Warren Buffett and Bill Gates.

Below is the full text as it appears in Foreign Policy:

Kamal Kar spends much of his time thinking about something that many of us would rather not: where and how people poop. It’s not pretty, but improving sanitation is one of the most important aspects of overcoming poverty and waterborne diseases such as typhoid and cholera, which kill millions of people every year. That’s where Kar, an agricultural scientist by training, comes in. Sanitation is about people, not pipes, he says: “It’s not a question of counting toilets.” Once toilets and sewers are built, getting communities to use them is often a tougher challenge: for example in Bangladesh, where defecating indoors had been strictly taboo.* He suggests such tactics as giving children whistles to blow whenever they see someone defecating outside — a sort of constructive peer pressure.

And it works. After Bangladesh adopted Kar’s ideas, latrine coverage skyrocketed from just 33 percent in 2003 to more than 70 percent today. Kar’s “community-led total sanitation” method is now at work in 39 countries around the world.

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CLTS pioneer Dr Kamal Kar interviewed at the Stockholm Water Week

Watch a video interview with Dr. Kamal Kar on Community-Led Total Sanitation (CLTS). Dr Kar developed the no-subsidy CLTS methodology in 1999 and started a global movement to address the sanitation crisis worldwide. He is based in Kolkatta, India, where he has set the CLTS Foundation. Video by AKVO’s Luuk Diphoorn on 06-09-2010 at the WaterCube during the Stockholm World Water Week 2010.