Tag Archives: Kyrgyzstan

Equity of Access to WASH in Schools: A Comparative Study of Policy and Service Delivery

Equity of Access to WASH in Schools: A Comparative Study of Policy and Service Delivery in Kyrgyzstan, Malawi, the Philippines, Timor-Leste, Uganda and Uzbekistan.

Emory University; Unicef.

EXCERPTS: Equity_of_Access_to_WASH_in_SchoolsUnderstanding the mechanisms by which children are excluded from WASH in Schools is essential to ensuring adequate and equitable access for all school-aged children.

‘Equity of Access to WASH in Schools’ presents findings from a six-country study conducted by UNICEF and the Center for Global Safe Water at Emory University. This research was carried out in collaboration with UNICEF country offices in Kyrgyzstan, Malawi, the Philippines, Timor-Leste, Uganda and Uzbekistan and their partners. The six case studies presented together contribute to the broader understanding of inequities in WASH in Schools access by describing various dimensions that contribute to equitable or
inequitable access across regions, cultures, gender and communities.

The researchers identified key dimensions of equity through formative investigations that included discussions with service delivery providers and policymakers. In some countries, inequity existed but was found to be linked to poverty and the prioritization of other health and development objectives, rather than a specific policy. In other cases, some dimensions could not be fully investigated, usually due to lack of data. Because it was not feasible to explore every equity dimension in each of the six countries, focus areas were prioritized for each case study.

Some dimensions were found to be relevant across country contexts. Limited access to WASH in Schools compromised children’s health, educational attainment and well-being, and exacerbated already existing inequities and challenges in each of the countries.

Gender was identified as a key aspect of inequity in all six countries, but the mechanisms and manifestations of gender inequities varied within each context. Menstruating girls in Malawi and Uganda faced consistent challenges in obtaining adequate access to WASH in Schools facilities, preventing them
from comfortably practising proper hygiene. In this context, a lack of access to school WASH facilities is a potential cause of increased drop-out rates. Girls in Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan were affected by the poor maintenance of facilities and lack of privacy, rather than by overall lack of basic access. In these settings, lack of doors and private latrine stalls, coupled with proximity to boys’ latrines, led to girls avoiding the use of school WASH facilities, which may have deleterious health effects.

Accessibility of WASH facilities for children with disabilities was identified as an issue in all countries. In Malawi and Uganda, concerted effort has been made to include school sanitation, water and hand-washing facilities appropriate for children with disabilities. The designs for facilities, however, were often found to inadequately address students’ needs, and hand-washing facilities remain largely inaccessible, compromising students’ health.

Kyrgyzstan: Safe and Sustainable – New Sanitation System

An international conference on Ecological Safety, held [in November 2008] in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan, called attention to a dangerous sanitation issue by offering an inspiring and feasible solution.

The problem: international donors are still promoting pit latrines, says Dr. Claudia Wendland of Women in Europe for a Common Future (WECF), but most families can’t afford to pay for safe emptying of the pits. In humid climates like those found in Central Asia, Caucasus and Eastern Europe, the latrines can become dangerous as a result, [and] often [pollute] groundwater.

[…] According to Sascha Gabizon, executive director of WCEF, dry or low-flush urine diverting toilets, combined with natural filtration ponds to purify grey water from sinks and showers, is a much safer sanitation system that can be implemented at a cost similar to that of the latrines.

The 200 participants of the conference were invited to visit 3 demonstration projects showing how wastewater from kitchens and bathrooms was efficiently cleaned using a “soil filter,” a sealed pond in which sand and plants clean the wastewater to achieve the quality of bathing water, The participants also visited 2 different types of dry urine diverting toilets. The cost of the toilets vary between 200 and 450 Euro, including a wash facility and light, this is much cheaper than having to build a flush-toilet and connecting to a sewage system […]. The cost of the soil filter for 5 people amounts to about 950 euro, also less expensive than connecting to a sewage system.

Gabizon says the WCEF strategy is to first demonstrate the new sustainable sanitation systems “in a variety of small and large scale applications, from households to schools to entire villages.”

See also the WECF project profile of “Kyrgyzstan – Decentralised and sustainable wastewater management”

Source: Julia Levitt, Worldchanging, 21 Nov 2008

The International Year of Sanitation 2008: from global movement to local action

The proclamation of 2008 as International Year of Sanitation (IYS) has handed the sanitation sector a great advocacy tool. However, big advocacy drives can also disrupt daily life on the ground, where projects need to be implemented and people connected to basic services. Water Supply and Sanitation Collaborative Council (WSSCC) Coordinators from Nigeria, Kyrgyzstan and Burkina Faso were asked about their thoughts regarding the IYS, and its impact on the ground.

Read more: Source Bulletin, Feb 2008