Tag Archives: Plan International

Testing CLTS Approaches for Scalability: Nepal Learning Brief

Nepal UNC

Pour Flush Toilet in Nepal. Photo Credit: Vidya Venkataramanan

Plan International supports Community-led Total Sanitation (CLTS) implementation in a number of districts in Nepal. In this learning brief, we review Plan International Nepal’s CLTS activities. We found government targets and definitions to be ambitious while decentralized planning allowed a focus on community-led processes. Plan International and other sanitation practitioners can support CLTS outcomes by providing post-triggering training and technical support to community volunteers, focusing on achieving gradual, yet sustained outcomes in program areas, and continuing to work with local governments to ensure that financing mechanisms for the poor are locally developed and equitable.

Link to learning brief: https://waterinstitute.unc.edu/files/2015/11/learning-series-nepal-learning-brief-2015-11.pdf

Citation: Community-led Total Sanitation in Nepal: Findings from an Implementation Case Study. Venkataramanan, Vidya, Alexandra Shannon, and Jennifer Bogle. 2015. Chapel Hill, USA: The Water Institute at UNC.

New Video Offers Five Lessons for Sanitation Policy and Practice

A new video from Plan International and the Water Institute at UNC offers a preview of five exciting lessons on sanitation policy and practice, based on findings from operational research on community-led total sanitation (CLTS). These lessons relate to CLTS planning at the national and local levels, its place in national sanitation systems, and the importance of involving local actors. In particular, government officials, teachers, and natural leaders can play important roles in improving access to basic sanitation, and their involvement can ensure sustainable outcomes over time.

Plan International – Testing CLTS Approaches for Scalability: Indonesia Learning Brief

Testing CLTS Approaches for Scalability: Indonesia Learning Brief, 2015. Plan International.

Sanitation Marketing Project in Grobogan District, Indonesia. photo credit to Jonny Crocker

Sanitation Marketing Project in Grobogan District, Indonesia. photo credit to Jonny Crocker

Plan International supports Community-led Total Sanitation (CLTS) implementation in a number of sub-districts in Indonesia.

In this learning brief, we review the roles of local actors in Plan International Indonesia’s program activities and highlight considerations for scalability, planning, implmentation, and evaluation.

Plan International and other sanitation practitioners can support the national government and local actors by placing more responsibility on sub-district staff to lead triggering, enlisting the added support of village facilitators to lead post-triggering, and scaling up village-based financing mechanisms to sustain CLTS outcomes.

Link to project website: http://waterinstitute.unc.edu/clts/

Study examines sustainability of CLTS programmes in Africa

Plan-ODF-sustainability-coverDespite the widespread implementation of Community Led Total Sanitation (CLTS) programs and many claims of success, there has been very little systematic investigation into their sustainability.  A new study, which aims to change that, is creating a stir in the WASH sector.

A study commissioned by Plan International on the sustainability of CLTS programs in Africa revealed that 87% of the households still had a functioning latrine. This would indicate a remarkably low rate of reversion (13%) to open defecation (OD) or “slippage”.

However, if the criteria used to originally award open defecation free (ODF) status to villages are used, then the overall slippage rate increased dramatically to  92%. These criteria are:

  • A functioning latrine with a superstructure
  • A means of keeping flies from the pit (either water seal or lid)
  • Absence of excreta in the vicinity of the house
  • Hand washing facilities with water and soap or soap-substitute such as ash
  • Evidence that the latrine and hand washing facilities were being used

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Creative measures improve sanitation programmes in eight African countries

Sapling handwashing, Malawi.

Sapling handwashing, Malawi. Photo: Plan Malawi

Eight African countries are creatively achieving the goals of community led total sanitation programmes (CLTS) including one idea in Malawi where handwashing is monitored according to the health of tree seedlings planted beneath water outlets.

In Zambia several schools have established vegetable gardens to reduce malnutrition and improve school attendance. Some of the harvests have been sold raising funds for school activities.

In Sierra Leone men have traditionally been the community leaders but women are now being encouraged to play a major part in village committees and networks of natural leaders.  To support CLTS women conduct house-to-house monitoring, giving health talks and reporting diseases –- many of them overcoming challenges such as illiteracy to maintain the programme.

Plan International’s five year Pan African CLTS (PAC) programme which ends in December, 2014, is operating in the eight countries of Sierra Leone, Ethiopia, Uganda, Kenya, Zambia and Malawi, Ghana and Niger. With the backing of the Dutch government the project was designed to promote and scale up sanitation in communities and schools.

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Darren Saywell/Plan Int’l – Urban Frontiers for Sanitation Programs

Below is a link to Darren Saywell’s presentation planto the USAID Sanitation Working Group on December 12, 2012.


  • Urban Frontiers for Sanitation Programs – Time to Get Real or Time to Get Really Worried?
  • How urban sanitation is different
  • The gap in urban sanitation
  • What’s new and different?
  • Community-Led Total Sanitation
  • And more

Plan International USA Receives $7 Million Grant for Community-Led Total Sanitation (CLTS) Research

Plan International USA Receives $7 Million Grant for Community-Led Total Sanitation (CLTS) Research Project in Kenya, Ethiopia, and Ghana

Plan’s Testing Modified CLTS for Scalability project aims to improve rural sanitation by researching and testing the cost-effectiveness, sustainability, and scalability of the CLTS approach

WASHINGTON, Nov. 16, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — Every year, more than 2.4 million people die from diarrheal and sanitation-related diseases – the most vulnerable and disproportionately affected are children under the age of five. In 2008, there were nearly one million deaths from diarrheal disease in Africa alone, according to the World Health Organization.

In September, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation awarded Plan International USA a four-year $7 million dollar learning and implementation grant to determine how to best introduce Community-Led Total Sanitation solutions in developing countries. Research and testing will be conducted on new and specifically designed projects in Kenya, Ethiopia, and Ghana and will examine the CLTS approach, ultimately aiming to uncover ways to make it more scalable and cost-effective.

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