Training women in Nadia District,. Photo credit: Sabar Shouchagar programme
The UN has awarded one of their prestigious 2015 Public Service Awards to Nadia district in West Bengal for their sanitation initiative Sabar Shouchagar (Toilets for All).
Bordering on Bangladesh, the rural district has a population of 5.4 million of whom nearly 2 million or 40% practised open defecation in 2013. This was in sharp contrast with neighbouring Bangladesh, where only 4% of the people practise open defecation. This realisation sparked the district to start pooling available government resources and develop the Sabar Shouchar concept.
Besides pooling government funds, the concept involved mass awareness campaigns, parternships with NGOs, focus on women and children as change agents, rural sanitation marts, transforming district administration and a 10% mandatory user contribution to cost of toilet construction.
All this resulted in Nadia becoming the first Indian district to be declared open defecation free on 30 April 2015.
Nadia district will receive its award from the United Nations Secretary-General on 23 June 2015 in Medellin, Colombia.
For more information go to: sabarshouchagar.in
Source: Indian Express, 8 May 2015
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Villagers in Salkot, western Surkhet, have to produce a “sanitation card” when applying for services from the Village Development Committee (VDC).
The “sanitation card” system was introduced in Salkot in mid April 2011 when it was declared an open defecation free zone.
The card contains information on whether the house of the card holder has a toilet and has pledged to no longer practice open defecation.
According to VDC Secretary Tilak Ram Adhikari red cards are issued to households which do not not concrete toilets and white cards to those which do have them.
The VDC office claimed that the out of total 1,553 households of the VDC, 1,117 households have been using toilets.
Source: The Rising Nepal, 18 Jul 2011
While Pakistan is struggling with devastating flood waters, neighboring Nepal is fighting a water problem of its own: Contamination by human feces. Open defecation is so widespread in Nepal that health groups are making it a priority to change how and where people relieve themselves.
But when you have to go, you have to go. And for many people in Nepal, that often means outdoors.
“They feel that to do the open defecation in the open space or in the open air, they feel it is very much comfortable for them in the rural parts of the country,” said Roshah Raj Shrestha, who works with the U.N. Habitat in Kathmandu.
Nearly 60 percent of people in Nepal do not have toilets at home, according to Shresta. That means about 16 million people are defecating in the open.
SIDDHIPUR, 23 August 2010 (IRIN) – In the fight against disease and child mortality, Nepal has been using some unusual tactics to get people to stop defecating in the open.
Children blow whistles at offenders and post name-and-shame flags in fresh, stinking piles; NGOs help communities turn their waste into “humanure” for crops; and one women’s group “calculated” how much waste tainted the food supply.
“We told the community, `If we don’t make proper toilets, it’s like we’re all eating our faeces,’” said Saraswati Maharjam, a member of the sanitation and hygiene education team in Siddhipur village on the outskirts of Kathmandu.
“In one year, we’re eating 2kg of faeces, and this is if you live far from the public toilet. If you’re near the public toilet, it’s even more,” Maharjam said, referring to the rough estimate her women’s group came up with to scare neighbours into building toilets.
Open defecation is a major problem in Nepal. According to the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF), only about 46 percent of Nepalese have latrines in their homes – and in the least developed districts in the west, that figure drops to 25 percent.