Momentum building as training of professionals complements community-level work to inspire people to end open defecation



Plan Cambodia

Grant Agreement signed March 2011

Programme Monitor:


HISTORY: The GSF programme known as the Cambodia
Rural Sanitation and Hygiene Improvement Programme (CR-SHIP) is managed by Plan Cambodia, which was contracted as Executing Agency (EA) in 2011. Programme activities reached community level through Sub-grantee activity in early 2012.

Fieldwork triggering of communities through community-led total sanitation (CLTS) commenced in February 2012 in three of the five southern provinces of the country where CR-SHIP is active. All eight programme Sub-grantees are ngos,
working together with Government of Cambodia through the Ministry of Rural Development. By the end of 2012, all five targeted provinces had operational programmes.


AIMS AND ACTIVITIES: Through the CR-SHIP, the Global Sanitation Fund is supporting the government by mobilizing
resources to undertake: advocacy work; CLTS programming; sanitation marketing; composition of information, education and communication (IEC) material; as well as development of critical tools, capacity and much more. The programme has
been carefully designed to focus on promotion of behaviour change rather than construction of latrines.

Sanitation trainers are now working at the community level. More than 815 villages have been triggered. The five year programme aims to impact 200,000 households, approximately one million people in 2,000 villages, 250 rural communes and 53 districts. Base line data show half the households in the target area lack access to improved toilets.

Within the CR-SHIP framework, the Ministry of Rural Development is benefiting from a grant to set up the first national monitoring and evaluation system for sanitation and hygiene thanks to strong financial and technical support provided by GSF, UNICEF and the Water and Sanitation Programme of the World Bank (WSP). This synergy of efforts reflects the sector commitment to support the government in order to ensure sustainability beyond the grant duration.

RESULTS: By December 2013, 558,515 people gained use of improved toilets. There are now 206,114 people living in ODF environments.


Sanitation groups in Cambodia are now working within a single national policy framework with improved financial means. Expectations are high due to the quantity and calibre of actors which has in some cases led to faster achievement of open
defecation free villages.

LESSONS LEARNED: One of the challenges in rural Cambodia is the common practice of open defecation (around
70 percent) and the fact that public latrine usage is often limited to adults. Recent efforts to introduce new sanitation promotion and improved hygiene practices into communities show emerging indicators of ­­­ behaviour change.

 THE WAY FORWARD: The GSF through funding to the CR-SHIP supports the country’s aims to reach its Millennium Development Goal target of increased sanitation services for 30 percent of the rural population by 2015. In March 2013, the CR-SHIP will reach the end of its second year of implementation and accordingly an evaluation of the Executing Agency and the Country Programme Monitor will be undertaken.



  1. The EA, Plan Cambodia, supports capacity building through a ‘train-the-trainer’ approach with an emphasis not just on quantity but on high quality of training. Hygiene promotion training of local government, ngos and community health workers exceeded targets set by the Global Sanitation Fund programme. In particular, a high proportion of trained trainers within each Village Development Committee led to five times more people trained than originally planned.
  2. Advocacy work is an important component of the programme and  focuses on prioritization and budgeting for sanitation.
  3. Among the Sub-grantees, there are a number of good performing organizations without prior sanitation and hygiene promotion experience. This indicates that the programme is reaching the interest of non-traditional WASH actors.
  4. There is a good dynamic around the Programme Coordinating Mechanism (PCM), which has effectively brought together government officials, development partners and international ngos. There were two learning visits organized by the EA with collaboration from stakeholders in Cambodia. The first learning visit was by a team from GSF Nepal which occurred in May 2012 and the second was by a Chinese GSF delegation that came to Cambodia from 25 to 28 June 2012.
  5. The Cambodia participants in the GSF Learning and Sharing Event in Malawi in September 2012 came away with concrete lessons from the host country on improving coordination mechanisms.
  6.  Through its own quarterly newsletters in country, and internationally via the WSSCC website, the programme is sharing regularly its successes and challenges.



Last updated: Fri, 04/04/2014 - 17:41