Sharing your experience (Corporate Engagement in Sanitation)

  • nityajacob
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India Sanitation Coalition - SuSanA India Chapter Thematic Discussion on Corporate Engagement in Sanitation: Sharing your experiences


Under the umbrella of the SuSanA Indian Chapter, the India Sanitation Coalition in partnership with SuSanA, is holding a 4-week thematic discussion on exploring opportunities and challenges of corporate engagement in sanitation.

The India Sanitation Coalition (ISC) is constantly on the lookout for ways to deepen corporate engagement in sanitation. As a network of over 150 organizations with the mandate to bring companies into the field of sanitation, ISC tries to leverage their expertise in project management, people skills, the ability to engage with multiple stakeholders as well as corporate social responsibility (CSR).

Several companies have supported development activities in the past and continue to work on sanitation now. This is over and above what is mandated in Section 135 of the Companies Act, 2013 that formalized corporate India as a critical stakeholder in the nation’s development by mandating compliance on provisions around spending and reporting on CSR.

For instance, investing staff time in helping organizations manage projects, providing specialized inputs such as data collection or technical skills, long-term engagement with communities around their plants and employment in factories.

The provisions in the Companies Act now has the potential to unlock USD 2.5-3 bn and cover around 16,000 eligible companies, the law has presented a historic opportunity for companies to engineer widespread change in the socio-economic landscape of India. It is viewed to leverage additional funds though not necessarily bring in wider corporate engagement in development.

An analysis of the CSR efforts of 100 companies with the largest CSR budgets was conducted by ISC and Samhita. This found that 75% companies were supporting programmes related to creating infrastructure, such as the construction of toilets while ignoring behaviour change, maintaining and operating toilets or solid and liquid waste management. The results reported that companies in heavy engineering, manufacturing and FMCGs were more likely to support WASH. This was possibly due to a ‘strategic’ interest from FMCG companies to promote their products that align with good hygiene. For manufacturing companies, it appeared a ‘stakeholder’ interest drove them, as the communities surrounding their factories are key stakeholders. Another way is to incentive sanitation by giving citations and/or cash awards.

Some of the barriers to corporate participation that were found include–

• Lack of usable knowledge on best practices and scalable models across the WASH value chain
• Perception that it is difficult to find implementation partners, especially those with experience of behavior change or community mobilization.
• Difficulties in quantifying and measuring impact, especially in terms of changing habits and attitudes
• Lack of clarity on what constitutes CSR as per Section 135, especially for companies whose products are aligned to WASH
• Difficulties in accessing government networks

Running for four weeks from 14 November to 10 December 2016 on the SuSanA online discussion forum, the discussion will look at several key issues relating to corporate engagement in sanitation. Join us to post your questions, debate with lead experts in the field, and provide your insights and knowledge. From 14 - 20 November, we invite you to share your insights on the first topic:
1. Sharing your experiences from India and abroad on corporate support to sanitation. United Way, a network from Mumbai that improves lives by mobilizing the caring power of communities to advance the common good is leading this theme.

Subsequently, we will invite your views on the themes below.
2. What are the challenges faced for companies that are starting to work in sanitation, and what assistance can be provided by a facilitator? This theme will be led by Neeraj Jain from PATH, an organization working to promote better health; you can comment on this from 21 – 27 November, 2016.
3. Apart from CSR, what are the possible ways a corporate can get engaged in the sector? For example, can they mentor business models for those wanting to be sanitation entrepreneurs. Cheryl Hicks from the Toilet Board Coalition will lead this theme. You can comment on this from 28 November to 4 December, 2016.
4. How can companies incentivize sanitation and recognize good work to motivate others to excel? This theme will be led by Priya Naik from Samhita that collaborates with companies to develop impactful CSR initiatives. You can comment on this from 4 – 10 December, 2016.

On the Forum, regular summaries of the discussion will be posted. A summary report of each topic, along with an overview synthesis of all issues from the discussion, will be available after the discussion on the website of the SuSanA Indian chapter.

To view the discussion and post, visit:
The discussion can be viewed by everybody, but in order to make a post, you need to be a registered SuSanA member. Registration is free: www.susana.org/register
Please note, you can join the discussion by either:
• Posting directly on the SuSanA Discussion Forum by following this link: OR
• Sending your post by email to posting@forum.susana.org (your post will automatically appear under your name on the SuSanA Forum)

If you have any questions, please post on the forum itself, or contact the coordinator of the discussion Nitya Jacob This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or the SuSanA Secretariat This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. We look forward to hearing your contributions on this upcoming discussion!
Follow us on Twitter @indsancoalition and @susana.org
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  • jayantishukla
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Re: India Sanitation Coalition - SuSanA India Chapter Thematic Discussion on Corporate Engagement in Sanitation: Sharing your experiences

Dear all,
it is a pleasure for us to introduce the first theme of the Thematic Discussion "Sharing Experiences", running from 14-20 November.

United Way Mumbai improves lives by mobilizing the caring power of communities to advance the common good.
At the heart of our mission is the belief that we rise or fall together. We all have a stake in the betterment of our community and its members. Our goal is to bring people together – NGOs, companies, individuals and government agencies – to work towards improving community conditions.
Based on years of experience and understanding of the Indian development sector, United Way Mumbai has distilled six priority areas for interventions, and created solutions that go beyond short-term charity. These six areas of focus encompass the most pressing social problems of our communities and the solutions are designed to address their root causes.
Vision - United Way Mumbai envisions a nation where all individuals and families achieve their human potential through education, financial stability and healthy lives.
Our Six Areas of Focus - Education, Health, Environment,Income, Public Safety and Social Inclusion.

Companies have supported development work in several ways in many countries.
In India, they have promoted sanitation even before Swacch Bharat Mission started. Their engagement has increased after it was launched. Some concentrate on hardware, others both hardware and software i.e., behaviour change. Some have extended their engagement to volunteering staff time as well.

We would like you to write about examples of these instances to bring out who did what, when, how where with what results. We would like this to kick off this discussion corporate engagement in sanitation by showing how wide the canvas is.
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  • muench
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Re: India Sanitation Coalition - SuSanA India Chapter Thematic Discussion on Corporate Engagement in Sanitation: Sharing your experiences

Hi,

I have a basic clarification question:
What exactly do you mean by "corporate support to sanitation"? Is it the same as the terms "sanitation as a business" or "private sector involvement in sanitation"?

Those have been discussed here on the Forum in the past:
Sanitation as a business: forum.susana.org/component/kunena/161-sa...-and-business-models

Private sector involvement, see in particular this interesting thread which was called "Innovations and Private Sector: Can They Solve the Sanitation Problem?":
forum.susana.org/component/kunena/161-sa...e-sanitation-problem

I think you probably mean something different but it may help to clarify exactly what is meant here, and to perhaps look through the mentioned previous discussions to pick out some examples from there and to build on them?

Regards,
Elisabeth

Community manager and chief moderator of this forum via SEI project ( www.susana.org/en/resources/projects/details/127 )

Dr. Elisabeth von Muench
Independent consultant in Frankfurt, Germany
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. Twitter: @EvMuench
Sanitation Wikipedia project leader: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:WikiProject_Sanitation
E-mail us to get involved: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
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  • VandanaNath
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Re: India Sanitation Coalition - SuSanA India Chapter Thematic Discussion on Corporate Engagement in Sanitation: Sharing your experiences

Hi Elisabeth,
The "corporate engagement in sanitation” as a discussion will largely encompass the Hows of corporate engagement. We plan to address the much needed insight into “How a corporate can engage in the sector” , not just as a funder but in various capacities. We also encourage corporates who are already working in this sector to share with us their experiences and lessons learnt (what worked, what did not and why). These will be a key takeaway for the ones that plan to venture into the sector.
Further, as you outlined, we also aim at understanding the business outlook to the sanitation sector. We really appreciate you sharing this with us and I believe Nitya , our India Chapter Coordinator can help us learn from the past discussions.
Not to miss, this is a India Specific Chapter, where we would love to hear about national successes and failures in addition to the international experiences.

Thank you!

Vandana Nath, PMP
Program Manager
Taskforce on Identification and Dissemination of Best Practices
India Sanitation Coalition Secretariat
New Delhi – 110001
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  • pkjha
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Re: India Sanitation Coalition - SuSanA India Chapter Thematic Discussion on Corporate Engagement in Sanitation: Sharing your experiences

Dear All
The position paper posted says “An analysis of the CSR efforts of 100 companies with the largest CSR budgets was conducted by ISC and Samhita. This found that 75% companies were supporting programmes related to creating infrastructure, such as the construction of toilets while ignoring behaviour change, maintaining and operating toilets or solid and liquid waste management.”
It would be useful if such experience from ISC and Samhita are posted for knowledge and discussion by the participants of the Forum. Most of us may not have such experience from Corporates. ISC may have information about amount of CSR from top 100 countries spent on sanitation in last and current financial year. There are around 1600 eligible companies for CSR in India.
I don’t have information about any project on solid and liquid waste management completed at Village Panchaya level (smallest administrative unit) under CSR. I would like to know such information from any member of the Forum, if available.
There are problems with the implementation of toilets and their proper use due to several socio-cultural and economic issues in the communities but such problems are not the barriers.
Thanks
Pawan

Pawan Jha
Chairman
Foundation for Environment and Sanitation
Mahavir Enclave
New Delhi 110045, India
Web: www.foundation4es.org
Linked: linkedin.com/in/drpkjha
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  • DavidAlan
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Re: India Sanitation Coalition - SuSanA India Chapter Thematic Discussion on Corporate Engagement in Sanitation: Sharing your experiences

I am going to join the conversation here and immediately agree with pkjha's first paragraph, copy nithyajacob.

We have just completed a short survey in India for a corporation that has built a large number of school toilets. The infrastructure is excellent, but now they realise the on costs are already large, and could be enormous. They are belatedly looking at how they can engage the local community to cover day-to-day running costs (cleaning, materials etc.). They have actually taken a moral standpoint and are actively looking at how to maintain the facilities, whereas many others have just turned up, built units and left. In 3-5 years the units will be decayed and unusable and we will be back to square one, and millions of dollars will have been wasted.

I remember driving through Bangalore with Vishwanath and him realising there is no word for maintenance in Hindi, and how do you approach a subject if you don't have a word for it? Most of the time the word maintenance is used. And this is the core of the problem, not just for sanitation, but across building projects in India in general.

I think it is worth considering SBM and its finances as I understand them. The amount the government estimated to provide a sanitation solution in India was calculated at around $10 billion (personally I thought that was well short of the mark). The government and states would provide about one third of this figure with the rest coming from a variety of external sources: companies, CSR, NGOs etc. The money that CSR would pay is, I assume, what we are discussing here. The trouble is this is only for actual construction, with no thought, as far as I can see, being given to ongoing costs. Under SBM whereas actual construction is covered under the guidelines, maintenance is not so well defined. Companies often approached organisations they were comfortable with and who did not necessarily have sanitation expertise and money was spent, shown in accounts and the job was done.

And CSR money is just that, a tick box process for many companies and too often even when NGOs are involved they are happy to take the money, employ people, build units and move on to the next village. I believe, and I am very passionate about this, that when an NGO approaches or is approached by a company then they have to spell out longer ramifications of sanitation involvement. It is our responsibility to spell out everything it entails and, if necessary, say no to money.

Now that's difficult!
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  • nityajacob
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Re: India Sanitation Coalition - SuSanA India Chapter Thematic Discussion on Corporate Engagement in Sanitation: Sharing your experiences

Hi

There is a word for maintenance. The trouble I have found is duplication of efforts, i.e., building infrastructure for people. Under Swacch Bharat Mission and earlier campaigns, people were to be motivated to demand toilets from the government. Providing them readymade toilets goes against this very basic principle of a demand-led programme. Companies are being asked to take a step back and help change behaviours, perceptions towards sanitation so people see the need and ask for toilets. This is also a non-negotiable from the sustainability point of view. Low toilet use has dogged sanitation for decades precisely because people have been given toilets either by the government or other benefactors without being persuaded to use them.

There are a few compendia on sanitation cases that I am pointing out here. Hope these will give food for thought on how companies can engage:
From Dreams to Reality; www.mdws.gov.in/sites/default/files/WSP_..._Press_28Oct2010.pdf

Private companies have contributed in a small way to the Swacch Vidyalaya programme. A summary is available here:
103.7.128.243:8085/swachhvidhyalaya/getP...isNewReportPage=true

Public sector companies contributed in a more substantial way. The summary is available here:
103.7.128.243:8085/swachhvidhyalaya/getM...isNewReportPage=true

Hope these help to get the discussion going.

Regards
Nitya
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  • nityajacob
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Re: Sharing your experience (Corporate Engagement in Sanitation)

Dear all

We are starting the second topic under this thematic discussion. Neeraj Jain, Country Program Leader for PATH in India, will be posting his initial comments tomorrow. This topic will be open till 27 November. We request you to send in your comments by either logging in or emailing to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Meanwhile, if you have further comments for the first topic, on case studies of companies working on sanitation, please feel free to add them on the Forum.

Regards
Nitya
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  • sidharth
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Re: Sharing your experience

Case Study

Providing Improved Sanitation Facilities through the Construction of 20,000 Household toilets in Barmer district: one of the largest sanitation CSR interventions

By Cairn India
In partnership with Rural Development Organization (RDO)
& Zila Parishad)

Under
Swachh Bharat Abihyan


Providing Improved Sanitation Facilities through the Construction of 20,000 Household toilets in Barmer district: one of the largest sanitation CSR interventions

Author: Sidharth Balakrishna

Background

The Barmer district has some of the worst socio-economic indicators in India with more than 90 percent people practicing open defacation in rural areas and ~85 percent overall (as opposed to the average of 50 percent in India) as a whole (refer to the table)

Such practices have, in turn, resulted in contamination of nearby water sources, thereby contributing to some of the highest Infant and Maternal Mortality (IMR, MMR) rates in the country.

Barmer Sanitation Statistics
#. Present Indicators Dist. Barmer % State % Rural % Urban % Source
1 % Households having toilet facility within premises 14.9 35.0 9.7 83 Census 2011
2 % Households having Improved toilet facility 13.2 34.1 9.4 62.8 Census 2011
3 % Households practicing open defecation 84.7 64.3 89.8 16.8 Census 2011

For example, media reported that in 2013, over 24 cities and towns, including Barmer, Balotra and Jalore, received Government water only once every four days ; and Jaipur, the capital city of the state, topped the list of water contamination with as many as 9,628 habitations not having access to clean water. It is estimated that ~75 percent of the Indian villages with multiple water quality problems fall in Rajasthan (Report of Expert Committee on Integrated Development of Water Resources, GoR, June 2005).

Cairn India’s Intervention
Cairn India is one of the largest oil and gas exploration and production companies in India. We are the largest private sector producer of crude oil in India with over ~210,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day (boepd) of average operated production. The company’s gross proved and probable reserves and resources base is ~1.4 billion barrels of oil equivalent.
Through its affiliates, Cairn India has been operating for more than two decades in India playing an active role in developing the country’s oil and gas resources. We combine a world-class asset portfolio with proven expertise across exploration, development and production to create significant value for all stakeholders.
Cairn India operates the Rajasthan block – a world class asset producing oil and gas with significant national importance. The block itself accounts for ~ 23 percent of India’s domestic crude production. Over the years the production from the field has considerably reduced country’s dependence of import bill.
Cairn India, with its 30% joint venture (JV) partner, Oil and Natural Gas Corporation Limited (ONGC), has invested significantly in the assets. Oil and gas fields, mainly Mangala, Bhagyam and Aishwariya (MBA), constitute Cairn India’s key assets in Rajasthan. The Mangala field, the largest onshore hydrocarbon find in India in the last two decades, was discovered in January 2004. This was followed by several other discoveries.
The production from the Mangala field commenced on 29th August 2009. Most of the company’s production today comes from the company’s oilfields in the desert district of Rajasthan; and therefore derives a significant amount of its revenues from this region.
Accordingly, Cairn India decided to ‘give back’ to the community in its areas of operation and felt that it should do something to change the scenario as part of its CSR initiatives. In February 2013, under the ‘Nirmal Bharat Abhiyan’ (NBA) program, we adopted nine villages of Beriwala Tala Gram Panchayat of Barmer district under Private Public Partnership model. The program has been very successful and ultimately resulted in the Beriwala Tala Gram Panchayat achieving ODF status, one of the first such panchayats in Barmer to achieve such as status.

The program was subsequently extended to 19 more villages of Gram panchayats Bhadkha and Mundhon ki Dhani, which are situated near the operational areas where oil is produced. There was a pressing need for an intervention in these areas for only 9.4 percent households had improved toilet facilities and ~90 percent of the population were still practicing open defacation.

We studied several models before finalising our strategy. These included the ‘Maryaada’ model implemented by Hindustan Zinc Ltd (HZL) and that of the Aga Khan Foundation, which has been active in Gujarat and Bihar.

Finally, we chose a model which envisages the Zila Parishad contributing INR 12,000 per toilet and Cairn an additional amount of INR 4,000 towards the construction of as many as 20,000 toilets. The beneficiary households would also contribute INR 1000 each to ensure their ownership of the facility constructed. The extra funds contributed by Cairn would go towards ensuring some amount of value-addition, such as:
o Cement bricks used for construction rather than slabs
o A good quality soak pit with cement plaster & covering
o The usage of an iron door with 20” guage Iron sheet
o Water storage tank of 200 litres being provided
o Tiling been done upto a certain level in the bathrooms
o Provision of a washbasin for proper handwashing

The project is being implemented by the RDO Society under the guidance of the Zila Parishad. The parameters on which the agency was evaluated included prior experience in the sector, technical expertise, competency to complete task within project timeframe etc.

Cairn would also ensure regular and comprehensive monitoring to ensure the project outcomes are met.

The role of the chosen agency was as follows:

• Work with the Gram Panchayat to draw up plans for demand generation and ensure speedy construction as per the required technical specifications
• Provide regular information/reports etc to all stakeholders so that the project could be adequately monitored.
• Designing and Distribution of IEC Materials: to develop IEC materials like, posters, wall paintings, brochure etc which would be circulated amongst school children and community members. The agency also would use the Internationally Awarded Film on Sanitation ‘Let’s Make it Right’ to effectively communicate the message of sanitation across the community.
• Ensure interventions at community level, through ‘triggering’ -a specific tool which has been advocated by many agencies working in the field of sanitation that aims at generating feeling among the target audience towards the “Need of Sanitation”.
• Identify members of and establish a ‘Village WATSAN committee’ that will be responsible for steering the village ODF drive that includes visiting existing areas of open defecation, designing a map of the village and highlighting how open defection is affecting the hygiene condition of the village etc

In another major value addition, Cairn India also facilitated the establishment of a Rural Sanitary Mart (RSM). The chosen agency was asked to set aside a revolving fund which was utilized for aggregating the demands of sanitary items (needed for the construction and maintenance of household toilets). The agency facilitated the establishment of a small unit which can manufacture items like Bricks, pit covers etc.

This was particularly important in Barmer as items such as pipes, doors, paint, cover Slab for the pit etc were not easily available in rural shops and attempting to purchase them individually from the open market increases the cost of these items considerably besides slowing down construction.

Results of first Phase and Change in Strategy

The first phase of the project till mid 2016 saw as many as 7000 toilets being constructed. The utilization was a shade over 40 percent, much higher than in many other parts of the country. Nevertheless, there were a few areas of improvement that were identified:

• Firstly, the project was spread thinly over a number of Gram Panchayats /Villages meaning that while the geographical coverage was noteworthy, measuring and monitoring outcomes was not easy; and nor was it easy to ensure utilization through demand generation activities due to the distances involved (especially as the Barmer district is a very large one-over 28,000 sq kms).
• Attrition rate among local Masons was high
• Inclination towards non contribution by the beneficiary
• Timely release of payments by the Government was an issue
• Implementing agency had not motivation to drive utlisation since payments were linked to construction, not actual usage of the toilets
• Not much interest from the Government, whose representatives did not participate in community meetings. The participation of the sarpanches also was not solicited by the Government; the sarpanches in turn felt pushed


Accordingly, after an internal review in July 2016, Cairn India, while recognizing and commending the constructing of ~7000 toilets by that time, decide to make a few changes in the strategy. This encompassed the following:

• The selection of Gram Pachayat’s where we would implement the new strategy was to be carefully done. One of the prime considerations was to ensure adequate water availability, as in a water scare area (relevant to the Barmer district, which is part of the Thar desert), the usage of household toilets was likely to be low
• We would focus on fewer Gram Panchayats with an aim to make them Open Defecation Free (ODF). A smaller geographical spread would help us to concentrate our activities towards ensuring maximum usage of constructed toilets as we could undertake more intensive and regular awareness generation drives
• It was also seen that usage of toilets was much higher where an additional bathroom was provided for people to bathe, wash clothes or utensils etc. Hence the focus would be on construction of these twin facilities
• Identification, engagement and use of Motivators would be emphasized on, with regular reviews of achievements
• Sustainability of surveillance Committees is important for ODF hence a dedicated team of people would be used
• Get children to endorse toilet usage and push their parents towards using toilets-through intensive activities in schools etc including exercises/ games on sanitation with their parents
• A database of beneficiaries is being established. They are being contacted through tele-callers who regularly emphasise the need to use toilets and to wash one’s hands.
• In addition to this, a regular SMS campaign is being started towards the same purpose
• We are also planning a ‘toilet beauty Contest’ wherein 1-2 families would get rewarded for the best used and maintained toilet every month.
• In Schools Exercise/Games on Sanitation with Parents will be organized to establish the importance of toilet usage.
• Planting of trees considered sacred in areas of Open defecation.
More importantly, the whole incentive scheme has been changed towards utilizing usage of toilets rather than just construction. This incentive is to be provided to all members in the value chain-the beneficiary so that he uses the toilet in his home, the Gram Panchayat and sarpanches to encourage the community to use toilets and the implementing agency RDO.

The RDO team would monitor the usage of toilets and recommend the release of incentives. Cairn meanwhile would monitor RDO’s work through random checks and regular weekly reports.

Accordingly, the Cairn team has revised the objectives in consensus with RDO and the Government. The new targets decided are:
1. Enhanced usage from the current 40 percent to 60 percent and more
2. Focusing initially on few geographic areas towards making them ODF: Batadu, Chitar Ka Paar , Singoniya and Kanod
3. Ensuring sustained and widespread usage of toilets by people of all genders and age groups-by focusing on areas with adequate water and targeting children in schools

Results

The results of the new strategy have been encouraging so far. Outreach activities have been held in several schools; several Panchayat meetings and workshops have taken place with wider participation from various stakeholders. The key points to note are as follows:
• In some cases, beneficiaries have really been keen to get toilets. Besides the contribution of others, they have put in their own funds-sometimes even over INR 30,000 to get toilets in their houses
• Much better support from sarpanches and local leaders
• Many human-centric stories have been noted and have received widespread press coverage in Barmer
• Increased utilization of toilets based on empirical data
• Appreciation from District Administration and faster support in terms of participation

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  • pkjha
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Re: Sharing your experience

Dear Sidharth and All

Thanks for such useful information.
In Barmer district, under the CSR from Cairn India, several school toilets (DRDO technology) have been implemented by FINISH India. You may like to give some more information on this aspect also.

pk jha

Pawan Jha
Chairman
Foundation for Environment and Sanitation
Mahavir Enclave
New Delhi 110045, India
Web: www.foundation4es.org
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  • nityajacob
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Re: Sharing your experience

Interim Summary

Dear all,

I have put together an interim summary for the first theme. Thanks for all who responded.

The third thematic discussion on the India Sanitation Coalition - SuSanA India Chapter forum started on corporate engagement in sanitation. The purpose was to understand how companies, public and private, can support sanitation projects beyond the remit of corporate social responsibility (CSR). The discussion was divided into four themes. This is an interim summary of the first theme where participants were invited to share their experiences.

The experiences concerned instances where companies have supported sanitation programmes in various capacities.

A recent ISC-Samhita position paper says, “An analysis of the CSR efforts of 100 companies with the largest CSR budgets was conducted by ISC and Samhita. This found that 75% companies were supporting programmes related to creating infrastructure, such as the construction of toilets while ignoring behaviour change, maintaining and operating toilets or solid and liquid waste management.”

There are around 1600 eligible companies for CSR in India. However, only a few seem to have addressed the problems of construction and use of toilets due to several socio-cultural and economic issues in the communities.

A short survey showed that while companies excel in making infrastructure, they belatedly realise engaging the local community to cover day-to-day running costs (cleaning, materials etc.) is equally critical. Some take a moral standpoint to maintain the facilities, whereas many others have just turned up, built units and left. In 3-5 years the units will be decayed and unusable.

The money that CSR would pay is usually used only for actual construction, with no thought being given to ongoing costs. Under SBM whereas actual construction is covered under the guidelines, maintenance is not so well defined. Companies often approached organisations they were comfortable with and who did not necessarily have sanitation expertise and money was spent, shown in accounts and the job was done.

Therefore, participants felt CSR money is just that, a tick box process for many companies and too often even when NGOs are involved they are happy to take the money, employ people, build units and move on to the next village.

Cairn India executed a PPP project to provide sanitation facilities by making 20,000 household toilets in Barmer district of Rajasthan. Starting in February 2013, under the ‘Nirmal Bharat Abhiyan’ (NBA), Cairn adopted nine villages of the Beriwala Tala Gram Panchayat of Barmer district. The program resulted in the Panchayat becoming ODF status, one of the first such panchayats in Barmer to do so.

It was extended to 19 more villages of the panchayats of Bhadkha and Mundhon ki Dhani, which are situated near the operational areas where Cairn has its oilfields. There was a pressing need for an intervention in these areas for only 9.4 percent households had improved toilet facilities and ~90 percent of the population were still practicing open defecation.

The project is being implemented by the RDO Society under the guidance of the Zila Parishad. Cairn also established a unit which can manufacture items like Bricks, pit covers etc. After a review, the project was reoriented. Panchayats were picked based on availability of water, possibility of saturation to for ODF, making a bathroom along with the toilet, engagement of motivators, monitoring committees, deploying children as sanitation ambassadors, a call centre to contact beneficiaries, rewards for the best maintained toilets and planting sacred trees where people went for open defecation. The incentives were modified to encourage use rather than construction.

The results are demand for toilets, investments of as much as Rs 30,000 by beneficiaries, better toilets, support from local leaders, and higher usage.

This example shows how an integrated approach built on behaviour change can work better than just making hardware.

If you have similar case studies, please share them on the Forum. This topic is still open for comments.
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  • magdalenabauer
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  • Former Intern SuSanA India Chaper
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Re: Sharing your experience (Corporate Engagement in Sanitation)

Dear all,

thank you for your contribution to the first topic of the discussion!

I would like to share two things with you connected to this threat:

First, Jayanti Shukla from United Way send us another contribution and final comment (posting on her behalf):

With many proactive measures taken by the government to drive the Swachh Bharat campaign for a defecation free India such as the Swachh Bharat cess and other options of making mandatory CSR spends in sanitation over, a lot of CSR departments are taking a serious view of tackling the problems of sanitation, access to clean drinking water and promoting best personal hygiene practice and promoting programs following these themes in their CSR programs and through year round employee engagements planned to build more advocacy on the subject. In our experience, this space is vibrant currently with discussions, implementable program designs, models of delivery and requires further work of closer cooperation among the stakeholders to achieve impact in aggregated geographies across India.

Entrepreneurial activity in sanitation is among the sunrise projects in the sector which helps to foster greater stakeholder involvement, cleaner uses of technology driven towards better ecological consequences and behavior change among community of users. This is largely because of the user friendly and sustainable models and high degree of engagement maintained by the promoters of these social startups in sanitation with the householders.

SusanA is filling the critical gap of knowledge sharing and information dissemination through these series of relevant discussions on the forum. It has been a pleasure to open the discussion on this topic.

Jayanti Shukla joined United Way Mumbai in 2008 after over 25 years in the corporate sector. She is an Independent Director on the boards of Standard Chartered Securities (India) Ltd, Standard Chartered Finance Ltd and Standard Chartered Investment and Loans (India) Ltd, was the Co-Chairperson of the CSR Committee of the Indian Merchants Chamber, is a member of the Task force at CII-India@75 .



Secondly, I want to draw your attention to the synthesis for this (whole) discussion, which summs up the main ideas you all shared and provides further readings and a good overview of what has been discussed.
Please have a look here:
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Kind Regards,
Maggie

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