SNV in Ethiopia transfers sanitation know-how to woreda government

Woman teaching group of people in robes

In a bid to accelerate inclusive rural sanitation and hygiene progress in Ethiopia, SNV handed over Sustainable Sanitation and Hygiene for All Results Programme (SSH4A RP) documentation to the Este woreda government. With pertinent documents in the woreda’s possession and having had received training from SNV through the years, the Woreda Health Office vowed to continue rolling out the SSH4A approach to sustain and build upon sanitation and hygiene achievements secured.

Part of the documentation transferred to the woreda government include the development of locally produced toilet seats, using locally available materials to aid people with disabilities. To raise awareness on the availability of disability inclusive toilet options, the documentation included tested examples of promotional methods, such as showcasing sample toilet seats in health care facilities, schools and other public places. WASH stakeholders, including teachers, were also imparted the skills to build disability inclusive toilets.

Said Alamz, daughter of Alem Endale – a 55-year old woman living with a disability – ‘My mother received a modified toilet chair, with a squat hole through the SNV project. Now, my mother uses this chair whenever she wants to use a latrine. I put this chair over the squat and she uses it without needing any additional support from me. The seat is comfortable and it supports her back... from now on, I think, this kind of chair can be produced by our people.’

‘Between 2017 and 2019, over 198,000 more people gained access to sanitation and hygiene; almost 256,000 more people practised handwashing with soap (HWWS) after defecation; and open defecation (OD) rates fell from 70 to 1 percentage point.’ By project end, 99% of the Este woreda population had access to (at least) a basic sanitation facility, a handwashing facility with soap, and were practising hygienic use and maintenance of toilets.[1]

In the presence of zonal and regional government officials, project documentation was received by the woreda government during the hand-over ceremony. Said Andualem Anteneh, SSH4A RP Project Manager in Ethiopia, ‘these documents are key in building government capacity, enhancing hygiene promotion and sectoral integration, and facilitating support for sanitation marketing enterprises.’

SSH4A RP was implemented in 50 kebeles of Este woreda (South Gondar zone of Amhara region), with a sanitation and hygiene target population reach of over 250,000 people. Financed by UKAID of the Government of the United Kingdom as part of its £ 111 million multi-country WASH Results Programme, SSH4A RP applied SNV’s rural sanitation approach, Sustainable Sanitation and Hygiene for All; developed since 2008.[2] Households classified as most vulnerable were the programme’s focus. For SNV, the programme engaged primarily with households living in poverty, female-led households, and households with a person with disability.

Talking with a representative of a Disabled People's Organisation, ‘SNV has created awareness on how people with visual impairment can use a toilet without the support of a caretaker. It has also managed to remove barriers to people moving around with a wheelchair when using a toilet. SNV laid an important foundation for all future toilet constructions (of any type), which also consider people with disabilities. There is now greater awareness on how to reduce obstacles in the construction of facilities, and make them more accessible for a broader user group, such as people with disabilities.’

Today, the documents are being used by local authorities as training materials for staff capacity building and services. The documents also form as reference material for staff conducting hygiene promotion and sanitation marketing.

Photo: Woman leads training session on sanitation during health development group meeting [also known as health development armies in Ethiopia] (SNV/Zelalem Belay)

[1] These findings were drawn from the SSH4A Results Programme’s end-of-the-project survey in Ethiopia, with results verified externally and independently. Access 8-page endline brief of SNV in Ethiopia.
[2] Sustainable Sanitation and Hygiene for All (SSH4A) is SNV’s capacity development approach to achieve area-wide rural sanitation and hygiene. SSH4A combines sanitation demand creation, sanitation supply chains development, behavioural change communication and governance. Implemented in households, schools and health care facilities, SSH4A was developed since 2008 and has been carried out in more than 160 districts across 18 countries in Asia and Africa. Learn more about SNV’s SSH4A approach.