Important WEDC event in Kenya includes WSSCC training on Equality and Non-Discrimination of behaviour change programming in WASH

Date: 11th July 2018

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Elizabeth Wamera, WSSCC WASH Technical Expert, emphasising the integration of EQND in the “last mile” of Community-Led Total Sanitation, during WEDC 2018 this week in Kenya. Photo courtesy of Tobias Omufwoko, WSSCC National Coordinator in Kenya.

WSSCC has a broad-based engagement in this week’s 41st WEDC International Conference, being co-hosted with Egerton University in Nakuru, Kenya, and including more than 400 participants from around the world. The annual conference is a known and respected platform for reflection, debate and exchange of sanitation and hygiene knowledge and ideas that are rooted in practice.

The theme this year is Transformation towards sustainable and resilient WASH services, a title which relates to the concurrent High Level Political Forum (HLPF), which is a central mechanism to follow up and review the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). In 2018 the HLPF will consider SDG 6 ‘Ensure availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all’ in detail. The WEDC theme therefore captures and conveys the essence of key local and regional issues in East Africa

WSSCC is historically an active participant in WEDC. The week incorporates three days of presentation and discussion of peer reviewed content, and two days of tailored capacity development workshops. The programme structure incorporates a variety of innovative formats for effective networking and collective learning.

This year, WSSCC is engaging a number of its members and partner organisations to give presentations, as well as arranging a special capacity building session entitled Equality and Non-discrimination in Behaviour Change Programming in Sanitation, a session that takes place Friday, 13 July.

Ms. Elizabeth Wamera, WSSCC’s Senior Technical Expert on Water, Sanitation and Hygiene, with partners is leading the capacity building session, which will foster constructive dialogue and mutual understanding on the latest trends and developments in behaviour change programmes and how they can be directed to be inclusive, ensuring that no one is left behind. Involved in the leadership of this Friday’s session, which will include some 30 participants, are Ms. Edith Kamundi of Institute of Water Center – Brisbane, Australia IWC, and Mr. Samuel Kin’gori, County Public Health Officer,of Nakuru County.

Aspects of the capacity building session include:

  • Introducing the concepts of equality and non-discrimination (EQND) within a human rights framework focusing on Behaviour Change Programming in WASH,
  • Understanding how to identify who might be the people usually most disadvantaged in sanitation practices,
  • Better involving and supporting people who may be disadvantaged, and
  • Introduction of useful tools for monitoring the processes to ensure that no one is left behind or harmed as part of sanitation programmes and processes.

An important input to the session is the Scoping and Diagnosis of the Global Sanitation Fund’s Approach to EQND study released in late 2016. While confirming that many people who may be considered disadvantaged have benefitted positively from GSF-supported programmes, the study emphasizes that more proactive attention is needed to ensure no one is left behind. Several recommendations are offered to better integrate EQND throughout the components and stages of all GSF-supported programmes. Download the study in full or summary here.

For real-time updates from this year’s WEDC conference, follow this Twitter feed or visit the WEDC Facebook page.

To read about WSSCC’s participation at last year’s WEDC International Conference, including paper presentations, click here.

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