Case Study on the Sustainability of Sanitation in Bangladesh

Case Study on the Sustainability of Improved Sanitation in Rural Bangladesh, Feb 2011. Water and Sanitation Program.

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To learn about the sustainability of sanitation behaviors, facilities, and programs that focused on achieving 100%sanitation coverage (i.e., ODF status), the Water and Sanitation Program (WSP) of the World Bank, in conjunction with the Government of Bangladesh and non-governmental organizations, carried out research in Union Parishads 4.5 years after they were declared ODF.

The primaryresearch questions focused on the sustainability of sanitation behaviors, facilities, and programs, the perceived benefits of sustaining ODF, and the growth of private sector businesses providing sanitation goods and goods. A central focus was to explore the determinants of why or why not these had been sustained almost five years after local governments declared Union Parishads to be ODF.

Households who remembered the ODF campaign are 1.7 times2 more likely to have an improved or shared latrine compared to those who did not remember the campaign. One plausible contributor to the shift in social norms mentioned above is the pervasive nature of behavior change communication messages that the households received. These messages were received through various channels such as union parishad members or officers, meetings or loudspeaker announcements (“miking”), health or NGO workers, and local leaders.
 
Households who reported having been exposed to a follow-up program were 1.8 times more likely to have an improved or shared latrine compared to those who did receive a followup program. Additionally, households that were visited by someone who advised them on latrine use were 1.4 times more likely to have an improved or shared latrine compared to those who did not report receiving a visit. It was found that two-thirds of Union Parishad Chairman promoted sanitation, and that 26 out of the 53 Union Parishads studied had some form of
follow-up program by an organization other than the Union Parishad. The implication is that households who received continued reinforcing messages were more likely to sustain their behavior compared to those that did not receive such messages.

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