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Before yesterdaySanitation Updates

Josh’s Water Jobs – U.S. citizens and legal residents: Director of Engineering (WASH)

DigDeep USA | Home-Based / Remote
Position Type: Full-Time | Organization Type: NGO/Civil Society
Experience Level: Senior (10+ Years) | Degree Required: Bachelor’s (Or Equivalent)

Simply Put: DigDeep is the only WASH (water, sanitation, and hygiene) organization serving the more than 2 million Americans who still don’t have a tap or toilet at home. DigDeep is growing fast. We won the 2018 US Water Prize for our Navajo Water Project, which has brought clean, running water to hundreds of Native families across New Mexico, Arizona, and Utah.

The Opportunity:

The Director of Engineering leads and coordinates DigDeep’s water, sanitation, and hygiene systems, including the design, technical implementation, operational excellence, and long-term sustainability. This position will support headquarters and field programs by creatively identifying appropriate technology, preparing and reviewing designs, monitoring system performance, and providing leadership and oversight throughout the project cycle.

The Director of Engineering is responsible for actively participating in the development and completion of projects, ensuring quality, efficiency, and effectiveness of DigDeep’s WASH systems, providing expert guidance and support, and maintaining positive relationships with both internal and external stakeholders,

Additional information/Apply

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WASHPaLS RFP – Advancement of Metrics for Menstrual Hygiene Management in the Workplace

Tetra Tech ARD Request for Proposal (RFP) No. 1866-003 – Date: September 8, 2020

  • RFP ISSUANCE DATE: September 8, 2020
  • RFP CLOSING DATE FOR QUESTIONS: September 18, 2020, 4:00pm EDT
  • SUBMISSION DEADLINE: October 7, 2020, 4:00pm EDT
  • SUBCONTRACT ISSUANCE DATE: December 1, 2020
  • AUTHORITY: Tetra Tech ARD
  • USAID GEOGRAPHIC CODE: 937
  • DESCRIPTION: Tetra Tech ARD Request for Proposal No. 1866-003 entitled “Advancement of Metrics for Menstrual Hygiene Management in the Workplace”
  • REQUESTOR: Tetra Tech ARD WASHPaLS Project
  • E-mail: Mahlet.Dessalegn@WASHPaLS.org

The Water, Sanitation and Hygiene Partnerships and Learning for Sustainability (WASHPaLS) project is a centrally funded activity of the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) Global Health Bureau, implemented by Tetra Tech ARD and partners.

The objective of this RFP is to adapt existing MHM measure(s), as appropriate, for applicability to the workplace and/or advance development of metrics to more comprehensively capture menstrual needs, practices/behaviors, as well as attitudes and social norms relating to MHM in the workplace, and field test these in two or more countries to develop a set of validated metrics which can be considered for inclusion in broad-scale, national surveys such as the Multiple Indicator Cluster Surveys (MICS) and the Demographic and Health Surveys (DHS).

  • A detailed RFP can be requested via email to Mahlet.Dessalegn@WASHPaLS.org.
  • All proposals must be submitted no later than October 7, 2020.
  • The email subject in response to this solicitation should reference the RFP number.

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USAID WASH & Gender Brief | WASH research | WASH & COVID-19 Update

CKM Team Updates to Globalwaters.org

Technical Brief: USAID Water and Development Technical Series: Gender Equality and Female Empowerment in WASH – This Water and Development Technical Brief provides guidance for designing strategies, projects, and activities that improve women’s and girl’s empowerment in WASH.

Activities should account for women and girls as more than beneficiaries of water and sanitation services. They are consumers, customers, influencers, professionals, household deciders, and keepers of traditional knowledge and solutions. Water and sanitation activities that empower women to be change agents have multiple benefits.

Participatory approaches are key. Gender-related barriers to WASH vary widely by geographic, religious, legal, and cultural context, and whether multiple layers of vulnerability––such as disability or extreme poverty––exist. Programs must take the time to understand the preferences, needs, and experiences of the women and girls and the specific barriers they face. The economic, health, educational, environmental, and social benefits to women’s empowerment in the water and sanitation sector must be a priority for all.

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Innovative Finance in Action: Cambodia DIB at World Water Week

By: iDE

When: Thursday, August 27 at 5:00pm Stockholm time

Where: Your home (online)

Innovative finance is an important tool for bridging the financing gap for SDG 6. Yet WASH has proved challenging for impact investment—despite great interest.

The Cambodia Rural Sanitation Development Impact Bond is the world’s first DIB in WASH. It is a nearly $10m partnership between iDE, the Stone Family Foundation and USAID to achieve 1,600 open defecation free villages, in support of the Cambodian government’s goal of universal sanitation by 2025.

The DIB demonstrates how innovative finance can help achieve national sanitation outcomes, and can provide important insights for others looking to develop similar mechanisms.

This session will start with a brief introduction to the DIB and then share how it was developed from the perspective of the three partners, including key lessons , such as: 

  • Ensuring the right finance at the right time.
  • Aligning incentives and playing to organizational strengths.
  • Focusing on social outcomes in line with national government strategy.

The audience will then be invited to pose questions to the panel and to share their experiences of innovative WASH financing.

katherineckoch

WaterAid webinar: Safety and well-being of sanitation workers during COVID-19 in South Asia – Sept. 3, 2020

WaterAid webinar: Safety and well-being of sanitation workers during COVID-19 in South Asia

Sanitation workers provide an essential public service – keeping our cities, towns and villages running and clean, even in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic. Despite working in a dangerous profession under heightened risks, little is known about how sanitation workers are coping with COVID-19.

WaterAid facilitated rapid assessments in four South Asian countries – Bangladesh, India, Nepal and Pakistan – which identify the challenges being faced by sanitation workers in the midst of lockdowns, and proposes potential solutions to address both immediate and longer-term needs of workers.

There has always been a strong, but neglected, moral and public health imperative to protect sanitation workers’ rights. The COVID-19 pandemic not only strengthens that case, but also represents an opportunity to redress the historical neglect.

 We invite you to join us as we share the regional synthesis of these studies in a webinar on 3rd September 2020, followed by a panel discussion with members of worker communities, and experts from government and civil society across these countries.

Date: Thursday, 3rd September 2020
Time:
2:30 PM – 4:00 PM (Pakistan)
3:00 PM – 4:30 PM India)
3:15 PM – 4:45 PM (Nepal)
3:30 PM – 5:00 PM (Bangladesh)

Zoom link: https://us02web.zoom.us/s/81291488434

For any queries, reach out to Ms. Shahrukh Mirza, shahrukhmirza@wateraid.org.

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USAID RFI – Research and Learning in Water Security, Sanitation, and Hygiene

USAID RFI – Research and Learning in Water Security, Sanitation, and Hygiene

Additional information and documentation about the RFI are available on Grants.gov and Betasam.gov.

The United States Government represented by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID)’s Center for Water Security, Sanitation and Hygiene in the Bureau for Resilience and Food Security is in the process of designing a new activity or activities to answer critical implementation research questions in the WASH sector. We are seeking public COMMENTS on the below proposed concept to inform the design process.

THIS IS A REQUEST FOR INFORMATION (RFI) ONLY, issued solely for information and planning purposes, and responses do not constitute a proposal. It is not a solicitation and is not to be construed as a commitment by the U.S. Government or USAID to issue any solicitation or to ultimately award a contract or assistance agreement on the basis of this RFI. If a Solicitation is issued, it will be announced publicly later, and all interested parties must respond to that Solicitation announcement separately from any response to this announcement.

Responses to this RFI are strictly voluntary and USAID will not pay respondents for the information provided in response to this RFI. Information, comments, and suggestions received will be reviewed and may be incorporated into future solicitation(s) but USAID will not provide direct response to any individual submissions, and will not publicly release the responses.

The purpose of the activity or activities as envisioned under this RFI is to design, carry-out and ensure use of implementation research on the research questions identified below, and to provide high-quality and sector-specific analytical, technical and evaluation services to USAID missions and Operating Units. This will allow USAID to address critical knowledge and learning gaps related to achieving USAID’s goal of increasing the availability and sustainable management of safe water and sanitation for the underserved and most vulnerable, especially within countries designated as High Priority or Aligned for investments authorized by the 2014 Senator Paul Simon Water for the World Act.

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WASH & Health: Prevention is the Best Medicine – WASH in Times of COVID-19.

The Sustainable Sanitation Alliance (SuSanA) welcomes comments on this discussion paper.

Please leave your suggestions and comments in the Comment field or contact: Jona Toetzke, jona.toetzke@germantoilet.org, of the German Toilet Organization.

WASH & Health: Prevention is the Best Medicine – WASH in Times of COVID-19. A SuSanA Discussion Paper, July 2020

The Sustainable Sanitation Alliance (SuSanA), an international network of partner organizations and individual members, plays an important role at the WASH and health linkage. Direct and indirect connections are anchored in most of SuSanA’s 13 working groups. While none of them focuses on health only, all of them contribute to services, processes or approaches that are fundamental to achieve sustainable WASH and health impact.

This discussion paper visualizes current opportunities and activities from the SuSanA community and highlights synergies between SuSanA working groups and several key issues of the health sector. Furthermore, it is a starting point for dialogue and collaboration with / for implementing organisations of the health sector. In this regard, the discussion paper intends to address the following topics:

Contents

1 – No Health without WASH: How WASH contributes to key health topics
– Public Health Risks
– Zoonoses
– Neglected Tropical Diseases
– Large-Scale Outbreaks

2 – Approaches for Risk Reduction and Prevention
– One Health
– Health Care Facilities
– Hand Hygiene
– Comprehensive WASH

3 – SuSanA, a Network for Sustainable Solutions
– Beyond SuSanA
– Within SuSanA
– Timetable

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COVID-19 & Sanitation: Water Currents, August 11, 2020

Below is an excerpt from the August 11, 2020 issue of Water Currents and the complete issue is on the Globalwaters.org website :

Overviews
Water Supply, Sanitation, and Hygiene (WASH) and COVID-19: Critical WASH Interventions for Effective COVID-19 Pandemic Response . World Bank, April 2020. Good and consistently applied WASH and waste management practices serve as essential barriers to human-to-human transmission of COVID-19 in communities, homes, health care facilities, schools, and other public spaces.

Policy and Legislation Linked to COVID-19 and Pandemics . UN Environment Program (UNEP), June 2020. This policy and legislation guidance is intended  to help countries better respond to future waste emergencies such as COVID-19 and includes information on the types of measures that could be put in place, the coverage and scope of the measures, and how to monitor compliance and enforce the measures.

Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) Outbreak: Some Serious Consequences with Urban and Rural Water Cycle . NPJ Clean Water, July 2020. Conventional sewage treatment methods with disinfection are expected to eradicate COVID-19. However, for densely populated countries like India that lack adequate sewage treatment facilities, chances of contamination are extremely high.

Waste Management: An Essential Public Service in the Fight to Beat COVID-19 . UNEP, March 2020. With COVID-19 continuing to spread and its impacts on human health and the economy intensifying day by day, governments are urged to treat waste management, including medical, household, and other hazardous waste, as an urgent and essential public service.

Water, Sanitation, Hygiene, and Waste Management for the COVID-19 Virus: Interim Guidance . WHO, April 2020. This interim guidance summarizes WHO guidance on water, sanitation, and health care waste relevant to viruses, including coronaviruses and supplements previous infection prevention and control documents.

Exploring the Correlation Between COVID-19 Fatalities and Poor WASH (Water, Sanitation and Hygiene) Services . Medrxiv, June 2020. In this study, researchers analyzed the latest data on COVID-19 fatality rates in sub-Saharan Africa with indicators of safe water and sanitation governance and found a strong correlation between a higher case fatality rate and poorer access to safe drinking water and safe sanitation.

Global Socio-Economic Losses and Environmental Gains from the Coronavirus Pandemic . PLoS One, July 2020. Using a global model, the authors of this study captured the direct and indirect spillover effects of COVID-19 in terms of social losses, economic losses, and environmental effects.

Wastewater/Wastewater Surveillance
Wastewater Surveillance for COVID-19: An African Perspective . Science of the Total Environment, November 2020. During the COVID-19 pandemic, early warning wastewater systems have been proposed as a platform for surveillance and a potentially important public health strategy to combat the disease. This short communication on wastewater surveillance in sub-Saharan Africa highlights challenges, opportunities, and alternatives taking into account local context.

Wastewater Surveillance for Population-Wide COVID-19: The Present and Future . Science of the Total Environment, September 2020. This article explores wastewater-based epidemiology (WBE), which the authors believe holds the potential as a key tool in containing and mitigating COVID-19 outbreaks while also minimizing domino effects, such as long stay-at-home policies that stress humans and economies alike.

Computational Analysis of SARS-CoV-2/COVID-19 Surveillance by Wastewater-Based Epidemiology Locally and Globally: Feasibility, Economy, Opportunities and Challenges . Science of the Total Environment, August 2020. In this study, researchers computationally examined wastewater as a matrix for detection of COVID-19 and found that combined use of WBE followed by clinical testing could save billions of U.S. dollars.

Read the complete issue .

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2 reports on menstrual hygiene management in humanitarian settings

Practice Note: Menstrual Health Management in Humanitarian Settings. Chapter 45 in the Palgrave Handbook of Critical Menstruation Studies, July 2020.

The authors are volunteers or staff with WoMena, an NGO that works to improve menstrual health and management in Uganda. Based on this experience and focusing on Uganda and Nepal, this practice note probes how the issue is approached in different contexts and at different stages—comparing urgent response after a sudden onset disaster (for example, earthquakes) to protracted crises (for example, long-term refugee settings). 

The authors discuss how interventions can be made sustainable beyond the short-term ‘kit culture’ response; they highlight experiences with more developmental approaches involving policy support, community participation, capacity building, and the use of products that are economically and environmentally sustainable.

Innovative Strategies for Providing Menstruation-Supportive Water, Sanitation And Hygiene Facilities: Learning From Refugee Camps In Cox’s Bazar, Bangladesh. Research Square, July 2020.

Background: There is growing attention to addressing the menstrual hygiene management (MHM) needs of the over 21 million displaced adolescent girls and women globally. Current approaches to MHM-related humanitarian programming often prioritize the provision of menstrual materials and information. However, a critical component of an MHM response includes the construction and maintenance of water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) facilities, including more female-friendly toilets. This enables spaces for menstruating girls and women to change, dispose, wash and dry menstrual materials; all of which are integral tasks required for MHM. A global assessment identi􀂦ed a number of innovations focused on designing and implementing menstruation-supportive WASH facilities in the refugee camps located in Cox’s Bazar (CXB), Bangladesh. These pilot efforts strove to include the use of more participatory methodologies in the process of developing the new MHM-supportive WASH approaches.

Results: Key findings included one, the identification of new female-driven consultation methods aimed at improving female beneficiary involvement and buy-in during the design and construction phases; two, the design of new multi-purpose WASH facilities to increase female beneficiary usage; three, new menstrual waste disposal innovations being piloted in communal and institutional settings, with female users indicating at least initial acceptability; and four, novel strategies for engaging male beneficiaries in the design of female WASH facilities, including promoting dialogue to generate buy-in regarding the importance of these facilities and debate about their placement.

Conclusions: Although the identified innovative participatory methodologies and design approaches are promising, the long term viability of the facilities, including plans to expand them, may be dependent on the continued engagement of girls and women, and the availability of resources.

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@WASHStrong takeover: How do human rights strengthen systems?

A4C Twitter takeover

Tuesday, 28 July, marks the 10th anniversary of the recognition of the human rights to water and sanitation!

@WASHStrong takeover: How do human rights strengthen systems?

On this day, @RealiseHRWS and @sanwatforall will take over the @WASHStrong twitter account to discuss how human rights contribute to strengthening WASH systems. We will share local and global approaches from Making Rights Real and Sanitation and Water for All.

The takeover will take place from 8am to 8pm Central European Time / 11.30am to 11.30pm India Standard Time / 2am to 2pm US Eastern Time.

Join us! https://twitter.com/WASHstrong

10 years after the human rights to water and sanitation were first recognised and with 10 years to go until the promise of SDG 6 should be fulfilled, we want to use this day as an opportunity for everyone to share their experiences of applying human rights to their own work.

Joins us if you…

–          Have used human rights and it has helped to improve WASH systems

–          Have questions on how human rights are relevant to WASH systems change

–          Want to see what experiences other have made

We hope for a lively exchange among practitioners in this space!

See you there

Hannah (WASH United/Making Rights Real), Manishka (SWA), Alec (Agenda for Change)

dietvorst

A4C Twitter takeover

Decolonising the WASH sector

Being true to #BlackLivesMatter. Report of an IRC Global Talk

BlackLivesMatter-Montreal-Martin-Reisch-Unsplash

Gay Village, Montreal. Credit: Martin Reisch/Unsplash

“The problem isn’t men, it’s patriarchy.
The problem isn’t white people, it’s white supremacy.
The problem isn’t straight people, it’s homophobia.
Recognize systems of oppression before letting individual defensiveness paralyze you from dismantling them”. (Ruchika Tulshyan, founder of inclusion strategy firm Candour)

This is not a quote you would expect to hear from an opening speaker in your usual WASH sector webinar, but the title of the IRC Global Talk on 16 July was anything but usual: “Decolonising WASH sector knowledge and decolonising systems thinking”.

On 18 June 2020, IRC posted a message from our CEO on Black Lives Matter with a commitment to the global struggle against racism. For this Global Talk, we found two, young undaunted voices to help IRC kickstart discussions on our commitments to #BlackLivesMatter. We asked them to elaborate on their recent provocative think pieces on decolonisation. First up was Euphresia Luseka, a WASH Governance Consultant from Kenya who wrote “Initiating De-colonization of WASH Sector Knowledge”, followed by the UK-based writer/facilitator and historian, Alara Adali who believes in “Decolonising systems thinking” for social change.

The colonised African WASH sector

Kenya-WASREB-Impact-Report-2018-19_Non-revenue-water

Non-revenue water losses in Kenya. Credit: WASREB, 2020.
Impact : performance report of Kenya’s water services sector – 2018/19, fig. 2.4, p. 27

Euphresia Luseka confronted us with a practical example of WASH sector colonisation in Kenya, related to non-revenue water management. Despite years of increasing donor funding, non-revenue water losses are not declining and amounted to 43% for 2018/2019 according to WASREB, the Water Services Regulatory Board. Project design is conceptualised in the North and implemented by expensive Northern experts using expensive imported technologies. There is neither a deliberate focus on the unserved, nor on accountability that would support the scaling-up of sustainable services after the donor leaves the scene. There is no value for money.

Global Talk participant, Martin Watsisi from IRC Uganda gave the example of a Northern NGO that had installed an imported prepaid solar water meter and monitoring dashboard in Kabarole district. Both became dysfunctional and were never repaired.

Interactions between donors and Southern partners are always political, Euphresia remarked in response to a question from IRC Uganda’s Florence Anobe Komakech. Most donors want to hurry the process so consultation only takes place at the kickoff of the project. Southern partners are reluctant to voice their opinions, afraid to appear to be ungrateful and hope they can influence the process later in project monitoring meetings, which often never materialise. Euphresia stressed that consultation should be a continuous process starting at the project conception, supported by open communication channels amongst other social accountability tenets.

IRC CEO Patrick Moriarty reminded us that 10 years ago, country leadership was at the heart of the Dutch development aid effectiveness policy, supporting direct budget support, pooled funds and sector-wide approaches (SWAPs). Now the Dutch have largely rowed back from this.

Decolonising knowledge

Euphresia’s blog in Medium sparked a lively discussion with over 30 contributions so far, when she reposted it on the RWSN Leave No-one Behind Dgroup discussion forum [login required]. In the Global Talk she told us that before we can decolonise WASH sector knowledge, we first need to decolonise our minds. The next step is then to define what we consider to be a good knowledge product and a good knowledge producer, taking multilingualism and copyright into consideration.

Euphresia would like to see knowledge collections showcasing Black perspectives and knowledge products based on collaborative research and peer review. Ironically, COVID-19 may help speed up this process, as the “days of parachute research teams from [the] global North [are] winding up”. The “pause offers opportunities to develop greater, more equitable collaboration between researchers in the global North and South”.

Decolonising systems thinking

Nepal--Lalitpur-Mural-Tobi-Feder-Unsplash

“Holding Up” mural by Caitlin Taguibao. Lalitpur / Patan, Nepal. Photo credit: Tobi Feder/Unsplash

Our second speaker Alara Adali wrote an opinion piece with the intriguing title “Decolonising systems thinking”. It was full of words and concepts that I never came across in IRC publications about systems thinking: empathy, support and care, creative acts of resistance, toxic positions of power, feminist, solidarity. Alara explained that she is using the term systems thinking not only within an international development and social change context, but also within a personal and political context. For her, indigenous knowledge, feminist theory and human rights are integral parts of systems thinking.

Within this integral context, Alara believes that decolonising systems thinking compels us first of all to come to terms with the legacy of colonialism and social injustice, which is now being amplified by COVID-19 and #BlackLivesMatter. We are not only responsible for existing systems but also those created by our ancestors. Secondly, Alara believes we must create safety and support networks for disadvantaged groups so that they can be honest when sharing their experiences for instance with development organisations. In this way communities can become active members within the system.

As a facilitator of workshops on migration and the climate emergency, and networking events, Alara says decolonisation requires communication and power sharing so that everyone can become agents of change. Within the London International Development Network, she is part of a group of young professionals involved in organisational change and systems thinking. At their events and team gatherings, group members promote horizontal leadership, switching between their roles of facilitator and participant. A safe space is created for all participants to share their experiences and ideas on decolonisation in an authentic way.

So what can IRC do?

Euphresia believes IRC is already on track to address decolonisation issues by opening platforms such as this Global Talk and should continue communication about these issues. She urges IRC to look beyond WASH SDG 6 to SDG 10 (Reduce inequality within and among countries) and SDG 16 (Promote peaceful and inclusive societies for sustainable development). Together with promoting mutual accountability and, as mentioned, earlier, build knowledge collections showcasing Black perspectives.

Alara asks IRC to take decolonisation to a next level by incorporating indigenous knowledge or knowledge from activist communities, which can be practically applied in WASH systems.  Secondly, learn to ask uncomfortable questions during IRC’s planned internal review on diversity performance in support of the commitment to the global struggle against racism.

Be bold, get uncomfortable and show leadership.

Watch the video recording of the IRC Global Talk on Decolonising the WASH sector and systems thinking.

Acknowledgements

This blog was reviewed by Euphresia Luseka and Alara Adali. You can follow them on Twitter at @Euphyk and @alara_adali, respectively. Thanks to Tettje van Daalen for copyediting.

Useful links

Initiating De-colonisation of WASH Sector Knowledge / Euphresia Luseka, Medium, 8 June 2020

Decolonising systems thinking / Alara Adali, Medium, 25 February 2020

Decolonisation of WASH knowledge: addressing institutional bias – guest blog by Depinder Kapur, 22 June 2020

Racism in the aid industry and international development-a curated collection / Tobias Denskus. Aidnography: communicating development. 18 June 2020

This blog was first published on the IRC WASH website on 23 July 2020 at:
www.ircwash.org/blog/decolonising-wash-sector

 

 

 

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dietvorst

BlackLivesMatter-Montreal-Martin-Reisch-Unsplash

Kenya-WASREB-Impact-Report-2018-19_Non-revenue-water

Nepal--Lalitpur-Mural-Tobi-Feder-Unsplash

Learning in the Sanitation and Hygiene Sector

Learning in the Sanitation and Hygiene Sector. Sanitation Learning Hub, July 2020.

How do you think we learn best? What barriers do you see and experience that make it more difficult for us to learn? And what steps should we be taking to reduce the barriers and improve how we learn more effectively?

This SLH Learning Paper summarises the key learning from a rapid topic exploration on ‘Learning in the Sanitation and Hygiene Sector’.

The study looked at how people in the WASH sector learn, the processes utilised and what works best, as well as the barriers and challenges to learning. It looks at learning from communities and peer-to-peer and how the learning gets translated into action at scale.

This paper shares the lessons from sector and associated actors working in low- and middle-income contexts around the world and makes recommendation on how to strengthen learning and sharing processes, as well as building capacities and confidence for learning, with the ultimate aim of turning that learning into action at scale.

Download/view the report.

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Five Notes on the Inextricable Link Between WASH and COVID-19

Five Notes on the Inextricable Link Between WASH and COVID-19 by Pallavi Bharadwai. Engineering for Change, July 16, 2020.

One of the newer sad facts about poverty is that it makes the coronavirus harder to contain. Three billion people do not have access to handwashing facilities at home, making it difficult to perform on the basic preventive measures to protect against infection.

Global aid organizations are aware of the fact. This week, I had the fortune to attend the launch of the United Nations SDG (Sustainable Development Goal) 6 Global Acceleration Framework. The event aimed to mobilize UN agencies, governments, civil society, private and all other stakeholders to drive progress on SDG6, Safe Water and Sanitation for All.

In more normal times, this event may have carried less weight. However, the urgency shared by all the panelists makes one realize the inextricable link between the pandemic and need for safe, potable water and sanitation for all. Thinking about discussions held at the conference and their place in these times, I’ve noted five takeaways on the links between WASH and COVID-19.

IT DOES NOT MATTER IF YOU LIVE IN A RURAL OR AN URBAN SETTING

COVID-19 has proved to be an unfortunate reality check for the already vulnerable communities that were facing a lack of water and sanitation services globally. More than half of the world’s 8 billion people lack access to safe sanitation. We are recommended to wash our hands several times a day, however 3 billion people lack basic handwashing facilities.

I contributed to a recent study on water, climate and the migration crisis as a reviewer. The study attempts to explain how to assess water-migration interlinkages as water and climate crises are disproportionately impacting vulnerable individuals and groups. These may include water pollution, inability to meet daily water needs, climate extremes and limited options to income generation, especially for those who largely depend on land and water resources for survival. We witnessed this first-hand in the migration labor crisis in India.

Read the complete article.

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Oxfam video on emergency sanitation – In Her Shoes

IN HER SHOES: The True Story of Emergency Sanitation

This new video In Her Shoes, made by Oxfam, highlights the drama faced by so many women and young girls in using communal latrines.

What is Sani Tweaks?
Recent research across our refugee response programmes has shown that a worrying number of women and girls are not using the latrines we provide. Low sanitation usage rates mean that we are not meeting the needs of the communities we work with and will additionally result in increased public health risks in emergency situations.

To address this, the Oxfam WASH team has developed a series of communications tools that seek to promote best practices in sanitation. The ‘tweaks’ highlighted by the series are intended to inform technical staff, to encourage continuous improvement and ultimately inspire a more effective approach to the design and construction of latrines. For it is such small improvements that will make the difference between whether a woman or girl uses the latrine or not.

Who is it for?
The series is aimed at technical WASH staff at field level, with the aim of encouraging proactive and practical implementation of the best practices highlighted. It is also very much intended to be used as universal guidance by all agencies and adapted to suit individual needs.
https://policy-practice.oxfam.org.uk/our-approach/toolkits-and-guidelines/sani-tweaks

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COVID-19 & Water Utilities – Water Currents, July 9, 2020

COVID-19 & Water Utilities – Water Currents, July 9, 2020

This issue contains recent studies, reports, blog posts, and webinars that discuss water utilities and COVID-19 on a global, regional, and country basis.

Overviews
USAID Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH): Strategic Approach to COVID-19 ResponseUSAID, April 2020. This document provides a comprehensive overview of USAID’s strategic approaches to WASH within the context of COVID-19 across health, emergency, and longer term recovery programming.

Utilities in Developing Countries, in Financial Tailspin, Try to Keep Water Flowing During Pandemic and BeyondNew Security Beat, June 2020. The global coronavirus pandemic is precipitating a financial crisis for water utilities in low- and middle-income countries as many of these service providers face drastic cuts in revenue and rising costs to respond to the public health emergency.

Supporting Water Utilities During COVID-19World Bank, June 2020. This blog post links to reports and tools which discuss challenges faced by water utilities during the pandemic.

COVID-19: A Utility Leaders’ ResponseInternational Water Association (IWA), May 2020. This online discussion brings together water utility leaders to share their perspectives, experiences, and response to COVID-19 challenges, the lessons being learned in adapting to a changing situation, and the main messages they are communicating to their customers.

The Unsung Heroes of the COVID-19 PandemicWaterAid, June 2020. The COVID-19 pandemic has drawn attention across the world to the vital roles of key workers such as those employed in health care and sanitation. This article highlights the daily dangers sanitation workers, who are often doing their jobs with minimal protective equipment, faced prior to the coronavirus and how the pandemic has exacerbated these working conditions.

What Water and Sanitation Operators Can Do in the Fight Against COVID-19Global Water Operators’ Partnerships Alliance (GWOPA), March 2020. Water and sanitation service providers (small-scale providers, utilities, and local authorities) can be instrumental in stalling the advance of COVID-19. Public utilities should work closely with local health officials and other relevant bodies to launch awareness campaigns about COVID-19 transmission.

Read the complete article.

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Waste-to-Value Sanitation in Kakuma Refugee Camp

Waste-to-Value-Sanivation-Thumb

Market-based solutions are increasingly seen as having an important role in filling gaps in public services provision and bring increased efficiency to humanitarian assistance. UNHCR partnered with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF) to investigate waste-to-value sanitation solutions for areas with difficult ground conditions in protracted refugee camp settings in East Africa. In response to a call for sanitation solutions for difficult ground conditions in refugee settings, Sanivation introduced an innovative market-based solution with a waste-to-value component to Kakuma Refugee Camp in Kenya.

This report examines the business model and financial model that Sanivation developed during the project and illustrates some of the real world challenges and opportunities for waste-to-value sanitation. It is hoped that the insights from this research will provide a useful reference for potential investors and entrepreneurs, as well as humanitarian practitioners looking to design self-sustaining waste-to-value sanitation services in refugee and low-resource settings in the future.

Download the full report.

 

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Emergency WASH Network Biweekly Update, July 1, 2020

Dear Colleagues:

CKM’s role in managing the Emergency WASH Network will end later this year so we are searching for organizations that would be interested in managing the Network in the future. Please contact me if this is something you would like to discuss.

Also, let us know if you have research, reports or upcoming events that can be featured in the next biweekly update. 

Member Updates

From Michelle Tran – michelle.tran@ouce.ox.ac.uk
A Survey on Faecal Sludge Management in Emergencies: University of Oxford – Purpose of Survey: This survey inquires about the importance of FSM in WASH responses during first-phase emergencies (approximately the first 6 months of the response) and whether later stages of the FSM chain are prioritized in emergencies. The results of this study will estimate demand for FSM products and guidance among WASH practitioners. Survey results will be shared within the wider emergency WASH sector after publication of this research (September-November 2020).

Upcoming Webinars

July 14 (in English and French) Make Me a Change Agent: An SBC Resource for WASH, Agriculture, and Livelihoods Activities – USAID’s Bureau for Humanitarian Assistance (BHA)-funded SCALE and PRO-WASH awards invite you to this interactive webinar to dive into the Make Me a Change Agent: An SBC Resource for WASH, Agriculture, and Livelihoods Activities training manual, and discuss how these fundamental skills can improve your WASH, agriculture and livelihoods programming.

Culture, Context and Hygiene Promotion for COVID-19. This is a free interactive online module, delivered live by RedR UK’s hygiene promotion experts. You will learn the key public health risks related to COVID-19 and how these can be addressed by appropriate hygiene promotion.

News

USAID’s Bureau for Humanitarian Assistance Fact Sheet, June 2020 – BHA leads and coordinates the U.S. Government’s humanitarian assistance efforts overseas. The Bureau responds to an average of 75 disasters in more than 70 countries every year.

Twelve finalists in the running for the EIC Horizon Prize for Affordable High-Tech for Humanitarian Aid. European Commission, June 2020 – LORAWAN monitoring by United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), real-time solutions for water tanker and water reservoir remote monitoring to improve the effectiveness of water trucking programming globally. WATER4HUMANITY by Tel Aviv University, a new circular economy solution allowing ultra-filtration of water using discarded “artificial kidney” filters.

WASH in Humanitarian Situations

Lebanon: Menstrual Hygiene Management Among Syrian Refugee Women in the Bekaa. Oxfam, June 2020. The research provides potential solutions and recommendations for integrating menstrual hygiene management in humanitarian responses, particularly targeted at the WASH, protection, education and health sectors.

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Strengthening Local Governance of Watershed Management for Water Supply and Irrigation in the Dry Corridor of Honduras

Emerging Learning Brief: Strengthening Local Governance of Watershed Management for Water Supply and Irrigation in the Dry Corridor of Honduras. Global Communities, June 2020.

Under the Dry Corridor Alliance Program (ACS-USAID), the Government of Honduras and USAID aim to reduce extreme poverty and malnutrition in rural areas of Honduras.

Since 2017, Global Communities has been implementing the “Watershed Management and Conservation” component of ACS-USAID in the departments of La Paz, Intibucá and Lempira, working with national government agencies, local and regional governments, communities and water organizations to address weak management of watersheds, which often results in severely deforested lands.

The Project provides grants to communities to reduce rates of degradation and reforest the watersheds, providing sustainable access to water for consumption and irrigation.

Global Communities also provides technical assistance to strengthen the capacity of local communities and organizations to manage water resources.

This Learning Brief describes the Project’s participatory approach, shares results to date and identifies key emerging lessons that will help to strengthen the Project moving forward.

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