Emergency Sanitation - Can you contribute to the Wikipedia Article?

  • eshaylor
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Emergency Sanitation - Can you contribute to the Wikipedia Article?

Hello Sanitation people!

As you may be aware the SuSanA community has been working on improving the WASH knowledge available through Wikipedia as a result there have been a number of new articles launched, one of these is for Emergency Sanitation .

I would like to appeal to the SuSanA community to enhance the article and contribute your knowledge to improving the resource. This does not have to be text you can add references and images too.

If you want to contribute but need help, then please feel free to respond to this post and either Elisabeth or I will get in touch.

Many thanks
Esther

Esther Shaylor
WASH Communications and Knowledge Management Adviser
Oxfam GB
Working on the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation Phase 3 SuSanA project (see here: www.susana.org/en/resources/projects/details/127 )
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  • JKMakowka
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Re: Emergency Sanitation - Can you contribute to the Wikipedia Article?

I added a few smaller things. Did you have something specific in mind that needs to be added? For a rather general page/topic the existing page (while short) seems not too bad. Adding individual technology options is maybe too much for such a wiki page?

Krischan Makowka
Microbiologist & emergency WASH specialist
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Re: Emergency Sanitation - Can you contribute to the Wikipedia Article?

Hi Kris,

I had wondered about a paragraph for each stage of technologies, i.e. starting with trenches and the key goals of vector control with trenches then moving onto communal toilets etc and the challenges for each. I also wanted to explain the links with cholera outbreaks and other diseases and the need for sanitation to contain these.

I see the article as covering the questions you get asked at a dinner party when people find out what you do, most people dont understand the challenges of containing shit on mass when resources are limited. They also dont really understand the links between sanitation and disease outbreaks. I agree what is there so far is good and if we put too much technical details it will be just like the chapter from Engineering in Emergencies, but maybe a bit more on the normal questions people ask?

Esther

Esther Shaylor
WASH Communications and Knowledge Management Adviser
Oxfam GB
Working on the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation Phase 3 SuSanA project (see here: www.susana.org/en/resources/projects/details/127 )
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  • muench
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Re: Emergency Sanitation - Can you contribute to the Wikipedia Article?

It's always exciting to have a new Wikipedia article go online, so I am really happy that we now have one for emergency sanitation, thanks to Cranfield student Yafeti Yamikani (with some assistance by me).
Here is the link: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Emergency_sanitation

And it's super to be using the Forum and the Working Group 8 members to work on adding more content to the article.

Thanks to Kris and to those who have responded to Esther's e-mail so far!

Kris:
I've had a look at your edits (all edits are available in the history tab: en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Emerg...ation&action=history ) and they're very good. I've listed some further improvement ideas below:

References:

I see you have added some further points to the challenges. Are you able to substantiate your statements by adding a particular reference? Or perhaps they are kind of "common knowledge" amongst emergency WASH people so it's hard to add a reference. For now I have added "citation needed" to the article.
But perhaps the existing references do include this information?
So far we have cited these ones (= the same ones which I had also identified as key documents here: forum.susana.org/67-challenging-environm...ns-resilience-issues )

References[edit | edit source]
^ Peter Harvey, with contrib. from Andy Bastable...[et al.] (2007). Excreta disposal in emergencies a field manual : an inter-agency publication. Loughborough: Loughborough university. Water, engineering and development centre (WEDC). p. 250. ISBN 9781843801139.
^ BORDA (2010). EmSan - Emergency Sanitation - An innovative & rapidly applicable solution to safeguard hygiene and health in emergency situations. Bremen Overseas Research and Development Association (BORDA) & BORDA BNS Network
^ Grange, C. (2016). Faecal Sludge Management - WASH in Emergencies, Problem Exploration Report. HIF (Humanitarian Innovation Fund) Problem Exploration Report. Cardiff: ELRHA
^ "Urban Humanitarian Response Portal". urban-response.org. Retrieved 2017-04-19.
^ Bastable, A., Russell, L. (2013). Gap Analysis in Emergency Water, Sanitation and Hygiene Promotion. Humanitarian Innovation Fund (HIF), London, UK


Are there others that you could add at the same time as adding a key statement from them?

Technologies

Regarding an explanation of technologies: well the good thing is that so many technology already have their own Wikipedia articles. Therefore, we just have to link to those and not explain them again. For example the article on pit latrines, or container-based sanitation.

So far, we have this information about technologies (each of the items are linked to the respective Wikipedia articles):

In the immediate emergency phase, the focus is on managing open defecation, and toilet technologies might include very basic latrines, pit latrines, bucket toilets, container-based toilets, chemical toilets. The short term phase might also involve technologies such as urine-diverting dry toilets, septic tanks, decentralized wastewater systems.


There is actually a Wikipedia article on latrines, which could be beefed up and then linked to for the technologies section:

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Latrine

Which other technologies should be mentioned? Which of those don't have their own Wikipedia articles yet?

Linking from and to other articles

Another thing is that Wikipedia needs to be understood as a "web" of knowledge in itself. This means, we also have to ask ourselves:
Which other Wikipedia articles should now link to this article?

E.g. today I went to the articles in Wikipedia about emergency, emergency management, natural disasters and tried to insert suitable wiki-links to the topic of "emergency sanitation". But more needs to be done in that respect. This would help to ensure that people who're looking up information on emergency issues do also learn about the importance of sanitation at the same time!

Regarding Esther's point:

They also dont really understand the links between sanitation and disease outbreaks.

it's true we could strengthen that a bit in the article, although keeping in mind that a heap of information about lack of sanitation and public health is in the Wikipedia article on sanitation.
Mind you, perhaps we can add more information here about specific public health issues in emergencies, e.g. higher risks of cholera. Risks that come from decomposing dead bodies of people or animals in stagnant water or alike (I am no expert on this).

So more to be done and all inputs welcome!! Thanks in advance.

Regards,
Elisabeth

Dr. Elisabeth von Muench
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(see: www.susana.org/en/resources/projects/details/127 )
Wikipedian, co-founder of WikiProject Sanitation: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:WikiProject_Sanitation

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