Category Archives: Campaigns and Events

Global Waters – World Toilet Day 2018

Global Waters – World Toilet Day 2018

This issue has articles on:

Backyard Cooperation Leads to Wastewater Treatment – With help from USAID, households in the Dominican Republic are turning to small-scale constructed wetlands to improve wastewater collection, treatment, and disposal. globalwaters

Podcast: Tackling the Global Sanitation Crisis – Rolf Luyendijk and Portia Persley—thought leaders in the water and sanitation sectors and members of the Toilet Board Coalition—discuss the importance of improving sanitation this World Toilet Day.

A Shared Vision to Keep the Water Flowing in Nepal – A community-driven approach is helping one village in Nepal improve its access to and management of drinking water.

The River Belongs to the People Who Live There – Gordon Mumbo brings a lifetime of experience to help cultivate transboundary cooperation along the Mara River Basin

Read the complete issue.

Rolf Luyendijk and Portia Persley on Tackling the Global Sanitation Crisis – Global Waters Radio

Rolf Luyendijk and Portia Persley on Tackling the Global Sanitation Crisis – Global Waters Radio, November 15, 2018.

This special World Toilet Day edition of Global Waters Radio features two thought leaders in the water and sanitation sectors: Rolf Luyendijk, Executive Director of the Water Supply and Sanitation Collaborative Council (WSSCC), and Portia Persley, Deputy Director of the Water Office at the U.S. Agency for International Development. wtd2018

In this podcast, Rolf and Portia discuss the scope of the world’s current sanitation crisis, highlight promising innovations for scaling-up sanitation solutions globally, and talk about the financial commitments needed to lay the foundation for a healthier future for all.

Link to the podcast and transcript.

Bill Gates Launches Reinvented Toilet Expo Showcasing New Pathogen-Killing Sanitation Products That Don’t Require Sewers or Water Lines

Bill Gates Launches Reinvented Toilet Expo Showcasing New Pathogen-Killing Sanitation Products That Don’t Require Sewers or Water Lines. Gates Foundation Press Release.

Gates Foundation and Global Partners Announce Commitments to Advance Commercialization of Disruptive, Off-Grid Toilet Technologies

BEIJING, November 6, 2018 – The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, with the China Council for the Promotion of International Trade (CCPIT) and the China Chamber of International Commerce (CCOIC), today joined global innovators, development banks, private-sector players, and governments at the Reinvented Toilet Expo in Beijing.

Together, they committed to accelerate the commercialization and adoption of disruptive sanitation technologies world-wide over the next decade. Rapid expansion of new, off-grid sanitation products and systems could dramatically reduce the global human and economic toll of unsafe sanitation, including the deaths of half a million children under the age of 5 each year and the more than $200 billion that is lost due to health care costs and decreased income and productivity.

A range of companies from around the world came together at the Expo to display a new class of sanitation solutions that eliminate harmful pathogens and convert waste into by-products like clean water and fertilizer—all without connections to sewers or water lines.

Companies from China (Clear, CRRC, EcoSan), the United States (Sedron Technologies), India (Eram Scientific, Ankur Scientific, Tide Technocrats), and Thailand (SCG Chemicals) announced the availability of the world’s first pathogen-killing reinvented toilets and small-scale waste treatment plants (called omni-processors), which are now ready for sale to municipal and private entities. LIXIL, headquartered in Japan, announced plans to bring to pilot a household-level reinvented toilet based on a leading prototype.

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Where to Find USAID at the 2018 UNC Water and Health Conference

Where to Find USAID at the 2018 UNC Water and Health Conference

The Water and Health Conference: Where Science Meets Policy will take place October 29–November 2, 2018, at the University of North Carolina ­(UNC)-Chapel Hill. unc.png

The UNC Water Institute’s annual event has grown to become one of the most important gatherings in the water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH) sector held in the United States. The conference this year focuses on five themes:

  • Measuring Progress Toward Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) Targets
  • Water Scarcity
  • Rural Water Supply
  • WaSH Equity and Inclusion
  • WaSH in Emergencies

USAID staff, partners, and implementers are participating in side events and presentations on topics including: learning from a USAID and Gates Foundation collaboration, designing sanitation enterprises, rural water supply, and examining research’s role in driving policy and promoting change.

Additional information.

Global Handwashing Day 2018 – Water Currents, October 10, 2018

Global Handwashing Day 2018 – Water Currents, October 10, 2018

Celebrate Global Handwashing Day (GHD) on October 15, 2018. Organized by the Global Handwashing Partnership, this important international advocacy day is dedicated to increasing awareness and understanding about the importance of handwashing with soap (HWS). HWS is one of the most effective and affordable ways to prevent diarrhea and pneumonia––the leading causes of death for children under the age of 5. ghd2018

The theme of this year’s celebration, “Clean Hands—A Recipe for Health,” emphasizes the key role that handwashing plays in reducing the prevalence of diarrheal disease and increasing overall health. For that reason, USAID and local partners promote improved handwashing behavior—educating the public about the health benefits of regular handwashing with soap; encouraging handwashing behavior change; and improving handwashing infrastructure in schools, health facilities, businesses, and households around the world to help create healthier, more self-reliant communities.

Hygiene and handwashing behavior change are also highlighted in the 2017 U.S. Government Global Water Strategy and USAID’s Water and Development Plan.

This issue contains contributions from the Global Handwashing Partnership, USAID, and others, as well as the latest studies on handwashing and food hygiene.

Join the #GlobalHandwashingDay conversation @USAIDWater.

infocus

Global Handwashing Partnership Resources
Global Handwashing Partnership (GHP) website – GHP is a coalition of international stakeholders who work explicitly to promote handwashing with soap and recognize hygiene as a pillar of international development and public health. GHP has importantresources on its website for promoting GHD.

Norms, Nudges, or Addiction: Understanding Drivers for Handwashing BehaviorGHPUSAID, September 2017. In this webinar, Nga Ngyuen of USAID, Dr. Reshmaan Hussam, Assistant Professor of Business Administration at Harvard Business School, and Dr. Hans Mosler of the University of Zurich and EAWAG present updates on recent research and key implications of two frameworks for handwashing behavior change.

The Forgotten Juncture? Handwashing and Safe Management of Child FecesGHPUSAID; International Water Center; Water and Engineering Center for Development; UNICEF, August 2018. Safe disposal of children’s feces is a critical practice. This webinar discusses the present status and impact of child feces disposal practices and handwashing, shares experiences across regions, and reviews key considerations for practitioners.

USAID Resources
Global Handwashing Day 2018: Clean Hands—A Recipe for HealthGlobal Waters, September 2018. This collection of photos highlights USAID’s support for improved handwashing practices and how the Agency is helping create healthier communities around the world.

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UNICEF Regional WASH Innovation Challenge

We are delighted to share with you details of the Regional WASH Innovation challenge which UNICEF recently launched in partnership with BRAC and ask your support in sharing the contacts and details throughout your sectors and networks.

This year the focus is on handwashing – looking for innovative ways to get Mothers and caregivers to wash their hands with soap at critical times. washinnovation

HANDWASHING + SOAP = SAVED LIVES – If it’s simple in theory why is it so hard to practice?

This challenge is open to applicants from all countries in South Asia and there is a $5,000 prize for each of the three categories, full details and applications can be made through the following links and I have also included some specific details in the text below.

The closing date is September 10, 2018 – so please join us on facebook, twitter and Instagram and visit our website. But most importantly help us spread the word about this important challenge so that we can solve the equation and save more lives through improved handwashing.

Regional WASH Innovation Challenge

Purpose and Problems to be addressed by the Challenge – The purpose of the Regional WASH Innovation Challenge will be to identify innovative solutions to promote handwashing with soap that can be implemented to scale in the South Asia region. The promotion will focus on:

  • Improving education and awareness of handwashing with soap, identifying the benefits of using soap, understanding of proper handwashing techniques and critical times for handwashing; and
  • Behaviour change, resulting in and sustaining the increase of good practice of handwashing with soap using proper techniques and at critical times;
  • Health impact where the incidence of diarrhoeal diseases and respiratory infections is reduced, improving children’s health and mitigating the risk of preventable child deaths.

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Sanitation and health: what do we want to know?

Experts meet to discuss reaching a consensus on what the evidence tells us.

Radu Ban

Radu Ban

Jan Willem Rosenboom

Jan Willem Rosenbom

This is the first of two blogs written about the “Sanitation and health evidence consensus meeting”, convened by the World Health Organization (WHO) in Seattle on May 24 and 25 of 2018. It was written by Jan Willem Rosenboom and Radu Ban, who are both Sr. Program Officers on the Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WSH) team at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. This first blog will describe the process used to arrive at the consensus, while the second blog will describe the outcome of the consensus and will come out once the results of the consensus meeting have been published. Also, mark your calendars for a session during the 2018 UNC Water and Health conference dedicated to this consensus!

Cambodia - India Two sides of sanitation rubbish and cleanliness. Credit Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation

Two sides of sanitation: rubbish and cleanliness. Credit Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Cambodia/India

Introduction: What is this about?

It is hard to imagine that making improvements in sanitation wouldn’t play a role in improving health. After all, we know that shit spreads disease and the F diagram shows us that sanitation is an important tool in blocking the transmission of pathogens from one person to the next, thus lowering exposure. And sure enough: we have strong evidence about the effectiveness of sanitation interventions and improving health and human capital outcomes from rigorous historical studies, from high- as well as low- and middle-income countries.

At the same time, looking at the specific impact of programmatic sanitation interventions, it can be hard to figure out what the evidence is really telling us. On the one hand, a systematic review of the whole body of evidence on sanitation and health (carried out by Freeman et al. in 2017) suggests that sanitation protects against diarrhoea, active trachoma, some soil-transmitted helminth (STH) infections and schistosomiasis. It also improves height-for-age scores of children (i.e. it decreases stunting, which is an important measure of human capacity). On the other hand, several recent sanitation intervention studies have found limited or no impact on different health outcomes. The table below (copied with permission from a presentation by Tom Clasen), provides a summary of key findings from the most recent sanitation studies:

Sanitation blog - Summary of effects from recent sanitation studies

  1. Fewer observed flies and feces; no change in fecal contamination of water
  2. Fewer observed soiled hands and less fecal contamination of water
  3. Except in the study arm considering just water quality improvements

This seeming lack of agreement is confusing, and partly in response to questions from practitioners, on May 24 and 25 of this year WHO convened a meeting of experts to review the existing evidence and reach a consensus about what it is telling us. The group of experts consisted of researchers across multiple disciplines who had written extensively on the topic of sanitation and health. We thought it was necessary to reach consensus among researchers before engaging, in a unified voice, the practitioner community.

At the same time, to make sure that the concerns of practitioners would be considered in the meeting, we published a “request for input” online (through the SuSanA network as well as the Sanitation Updates blog) and we will summarise the responses here. But first…

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