SuSanA - Forum Kunena Site Syndication Sun, 24 May 2015 15:15:30 +0000 Kunena 1.6 SuSanA - Forum en-gb Re: New Study from Bangladesh - finds CLTS ineffective without subsidies - by: eendres
I also question the LSA model used, but not necessarily the use of salaries to compensate LSAs (see iDE's awesome summary of the HYSTRA report attached--having a full-time, dedicated sales force can reduce turnover and increase efficiency). My real concern is that they weren't use effectively. Their roles are described in the supplemental document as: 1) providing information about where to buy a latrine; 2) enabling households to assess the quality of latrines being sold; 3) Assist with delivery and installation; and 4) Provide technical support post-purchase. But they were also instructed not to provide information about the benefits of latrine use!

There was no intervention tested that combined demand creation (either through village level sanitation promotion like LPP, or through IPC or DCC via sales agents) with supply. Just as the success of CLTS is limited without a functioning supply chain, the supply chain cannot function without a sufficient level of demand. I wonder what the results would have been if LSAs were able to have conversations about the benefits of latrine use and the difficulties of OD AND connect people with aspirational and affordable products?

I'd also be interested to see what the use rates are in, say, six months to a year. Did the size of the subsidy make the product cheap enough to buy, whether or not the purchaser really intended to change OD habits? Maybe. But I think there's room to explore how subsidies could actually benefit the private sector, if used in the right way. For example, could these subsidies, in the form of vouchers, actually support the private sector by giving them access to a portion of the market that they wouldn't have without the help of subsidies? Could those vouchers give the poorest the ability (and the dignity) to purchase a latrine that they can be proud to use, AND help make sanitation a more viable business (which would not only help current sanitation businesses survive and grow, but also encourage more entrepreneurship in the sector)?]]>
CLTS (Community led total sanitation) and other community led approaches Fri, 08 May 2015 03:39:23 +0000
New: Frontiers issue 5! Making Sanitation and Hygiene Safer- Reducing Vulnerabilities to Violence - by: Petra
This issue of Frontiers of CLTS focuses on the issue of safety and vulnerabilities to violence that women, girls and sometimes boys and men can face which are related to sanitation and hygiene. It points out areas in which CLTS methodologies, if not used skilfully with awareness and care, can run the potential risk of creating additional vulnerabilities, for example as a by-product of community pressure to reach ODF. It also looks at good practices within organisations to ensure that those working in the sector know how to programme to reduce vulnerabilities to violence and to ensure that sector actors also do not become the perpetrators of, or face violence.

Download Making Sanitation and Hygiene Safer- Reducing Vulnerabilities to Violence]]>
CLTS (Community led total sanitation) and other community led approaches Tue, 05 May 2015 13:13:34 +0000
Re: CLTS on wikipedia - by: muench How would you explain why CLTS is not as successful in Latin American countries, or not successful in Bolivia, to take a specific case?
Is it perhaps because these countries are already "further along" than some of the Asian and African countries? I.e. there is less prevalence of open defecation and perhaps CLTS works best in settings where open defecation is really high? Or less "community pressures", more "individual behaviors" perhaps?]]>
CLTS (Community led total sanitation) and other community led approaches Tue, 05 May 2015 11:06:01 +0000
Re: CLTS on wikipedia - by: Petra CLTS (Community led total sanitation) and other community led approaches Tue, 05 May 2015 10:16:32 +0000 Re: CLTS on wikipedia - by: joeturner

Also Kamal Kar has repeatedly said that CLTS is in Latin America (including in peer reviewed papers) and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill's CLTS research team state "Community-led total sanitation (CLTS) is an approach to sanitation promotion that has spread to countries across South Asia, Latin America and Africa over the past 15 years."]]>
CLTS (Community led total sanitation) and other community led approaches Tue, 05 May 2015 10:12:32 +0000
Re: CLTS on wikipedia - by: Petra CLTS (Community led total sanitation) and other community led approaches Tue, 05 May 2015 08:34:09 +0000 Re: CLTS on wikipedia - by: muench
I went to their website and found this information:

Community Led Total Sanitation (CLTS)

Village Education Resource Center (VERC) as the pioneering NGO innovated CLTS approach in February 2000. Working at grass root level with community on WATSAN program VERC has learned that community awareness and increased initiative and active participation could prevent most of the water and excreta borne diseases. As such VERC has been executing “People Initiated 100% Sanitation Approach” since early 2000 with financial and technical assistance of WaterAid Bangladesh supported by DFID. The approach is now referred to as the Community Led Total Sanitation (CLTS) approach in Bangladesh and abroad. VERC experience was also reflected in national sanitation program strategy.

I am wondering if this should be mentioned in the Wikipedia article, provided we have a reference to cite? Just citing their website would not be ideal.

Or perhaps many organisations are claiming to have been "pioneers of CLTS"? Does anyone have any insights in the work that VERC did in Bangladesh starting in the year 2000?]]>
CLTS (Community led total sanitation) and other community led approaches Mon, 04 May 2015 10:40:34 +0000
Re: CLTS on wikipedia - by: muench
Thanks so much for working on the CLTs article on Wikipedia. That's excellent. We started discussing this via e-mail but I suggested to put it on the forum in case others are also interested in improving the CLTS article further (and I hope they are).

I had a quick look at the proposed changes to the CLTS article on Wikipedia in your attached Word document. Like Joe, I also think it looks good overall. However, I have the same points to make as Joe:

Why did you remove Latin America in this sentence?
It has spread throughout Bangladesh and to many other Asican, and African and Latin American countries with support from the Water and Sanitation Program of the World Bank, DFID and other bilateral donors, Plan International, WaterAid, CARE, UNICEF, SNV and other large INGOs and many national NGOs

Is CLTS not so successful in Latin America? If not, do we have a reference that says something about that point?

This is a strong sentence but it needs a reference (as Joe pointed out):

In at least 20 countries CLTS is part of national policy.

Perhaps we should even list these 20 countries, or at least the top 10 countries where CLTS has been most successful.

By the way if you know there should be a citation but you don't have one at hand yet, you can also add this into the source code: {{citation needed}}. That's a hint to another editor that they should find a reference...

You have moved the history section from the back to the front of the article. However, we had moved it back to be consistent with other sanitation articles, based on the Manual of Style that we have developed for sanitation articles (see here). This manual of style is modelled on the Manual of Style for the Wikiproject Medicine, which also puts the history section last. I think when people look for encyclopedic content they first want to know the current situation and perhaps only later the historical aspects.

A statement such as this will need a reference (I know that you know this, but I am just putting this here so that other people who are interested in editing on Wikipedia are aware of this):

It has been estimated that 30 million people have benefitted from CLTS

Should this sentence really be deleted even though it had a reference with it? Maybe it just needs to be clarified? :

Some researchers suggest that this means support is needed to support communities to upgrade facilities in ODF villages which have been triggered by CLTS

I am not sure if I agree with your new heading of "Combining with Ecosan". Firstly, not everyone will know what ecosan means so you'd have to define that. Remember we are writing for lay people here. "Reuse of excreta" which is how it was called before is clearer, I think. Secondly, you are then proceeding to equating ecosan to UDDTs and composting toilets which is not correct (see Wikipedia entry on ecosan:

So I don't think we need to bring up the term "ecosan" here at all, but should keep to the topics that we want to discuss. I.e. how CLTS can be coupled with reuse of excreta and how villagers know or don't know about UDDTs as a possible alternative option to pit latrines.

As you told me that in your MSc thesis you looked at CLTS and UDDTs together, this might be a good document to cite?

Ecological Sanitation: A sustainable dream or reality?
Exploring complexity of transitions to more sustainable
sanitation practices: A case-study of Burmi Tola, India
Lund University, Sweden

I just had a quick look at your thesis, but it doesn't say that much about CLTS though?
And why in your conclusions on page 39 you describe ecosan as a technological fix?
That's exactly what it is not. Were you equating ecosan with building UDDTs?

Ecosan, as a technological fix, has been promoted as a way to solve some of the world’s sanitation
problems. Yet, the data shows that there are many complex barriers to implementing and scaling-up
new technologies.

I have recently done some additional work on the Wikipedia page of ecosan ( and on the Wikipedia page on reuse of excreta ( In the latter, there is a section on policy which draws on a publication by SEI:

I think your thesis conclusions would probably agree with what is there under policy. But to describe ecosan as a "technological fix" I find somewhat odd. Perhaps you could explain what you meant with it and why you used that wording? Who has proposed ecosan to you as a "technological fix"?

Kind regards,
CLTS (Community led total sanitation) and other community led approaches Mon, 04 May 2015 10:03:08 +0000
New Research Summaries and Synthesis: Understanding the Implementation Context for CLTS - by: ryanrowe
I've been a member of this forum for some time without posting, but have keenly observed and learned from many of the discussions. Thank you for this great resource and knowledge-sharing!

I would like to share with you four new documents being released from the Plan International USA project "Testing CLTS Approaches for Scalability" for which the Water Institute at UNC is research partner.

We conducted situational assessments of CLTS in Kenya, Ethiopia, and Ghana and share with you the findings in these new short notes, which provide a snapshot of the context for implementing CLTS in each of those countries in 2012. We also developed a one-page synthesis to illustrate CLTS-specific challenges in the context of the findings of the UN-Water GLAAS 2014 report.

Community-led Total Sanitation in Kenya, Ghana, and Ethiopia: Findings from Situational Assessments. Crocker, Jonny, Jennifer Bogle, and Ryan Rowe. 2015. The Water Institute at UNC: Chapel Hill, USA. Link:

A situational assessment can inform program planning and evaluation. We assessed national policy, institutional arrangements, and monitoring systems for CLTS in Ethiopia, Ghana, and Kenya prior to evaluations of Plan International’s CLTS projects with local actors. In three short research summaries, we present the strong national government support for CLTS and the key role played by non-government actors in implementation. Improved monitoring is needed for countries to assess program efficiency and effectiveness. The insights provide a baseline reference for CLTS policy and practice.

Community-led Total Sanitation Research Brief: Implementation Context in Kenya, Ghana, and Ethiopia. Crocker, Jonny, Jennifer Bogle, and Ryan Rowe. 2015. The Water Institute at UNC: Chapel Hill, USA. Link:

Contextual factors may affect how local actors influence sanitation outcomes. In 2012, prior to working with local actors in Kenya, Ghana, and Ethiopia, researchers characterized the national context for implementing CLTS in each country. This publication synthesizes the research findings and shows how they illustrate the conclusions of the UN-Water GLAAS 2014 report, as they relate to political processes, implementation, and monitoring and evaluations systems. Decision-makers may utilize the information to guide CLTS policy and strategic plans.

We would welcome questions or comments on these resources.

Thank you and best regards
Ryan Rowe]]>
CLTS (Community led total sanitation) and other community led approaches Mon, 04 May 2015 05:51:56 +0000
Re: CLTS on wikipedia - by: joeturner
The minor issues I have are relating to the way you've added unreferenced information and removed some which had references. For example the statement that CLTS is in Latin America is from the website of the CLTS Knowledge Hub.

Also we'd need a reference to show that it was national policy in more than 20 countries, that there was an issue combining CLTS with ecosan and showing the number of people who have benefited from CLTS.]]>
CLTS (Community led total sanitation) and other community led approaches Fri, 01 May 2015 13:14:24 +0000
Re: CLTS on wikipedia - by: JamieMyers
Major changes:

- Added a section on the problems of combining CLTS and Ecosan
- Bring the 'history' section higher up the page
- Removing the part about 'lack of effectiveness in a study of similar methods' as this was not CLTS but the Total Sanitation Campaign]]>
CLTS (Community led total sanitation) and other community led approaches Fri, 01 May 2015 12:59:18 +0000
Re: New Study from Bangladesh - finds CLTS ineffective without subsidies - by: Guy a) that it demotivates people who don't get a subsidy (why should they invest, better to wait for next subsidy?); and b) that users won't look after a subsidised latrine as well as if they'd paid for it with their own money. Intriguingly, this study seems to provide evidence against (a): near-neighbours of people who got a subsidy were MORE likely to invest than controls. As regards (b), this study doesn't appear to present any evidence either way: latrine use was assessed only once, presumably soon after the intervention. It would be useful for the researchers or others to go back and see how well latrines are being used now in the different treatment groups (and that'd also be an opportunity to apply some better metrics of latrine use/care). That would be important to properly interpret these findings. (PhD/masters project anyone?) Independently of this, on the other side of the equation from the arguments against, there is of course a clear argument for well-designed targeted subsidy: it provides a hygienic facility for people who wouldn't otherwise be able or willing to invest (with benefits for that household, and also probably for other people in the community). I certainly welcome an evidence-based study which encourages us to question the "latrine subsidy is bad" dogma.

Guy Norman

of Water & Sanitation for the Urban Poor (WSUP) and Public Finance for WASH initiative (, opinions are my own]]>
CLTS (Community led total sanitation) and other community led approaches Fri, 01 May 2015 11:08:07 +0000
Re: CLTS photo case-study - Malawi - by: joeturner

I have asked them on twitter about using the photos on wikipedia]]>
CLTS (Community led total sanitation) and other community led approaches Thu, 30 Apr 2015 13:10:31 +0000
Re: CLTS photo case-study - Malawi - by: joeturner
Have you tried Global Citizen for contact details of the project?]]>
CLTS (Community led total sanitation) and other community led approaches Thu, 30 Apr 2015 13:04:51 +0000
Re: CLTS photo case-study - Malawi - by: muench
You said you liked the last photo the most, you mean this one? Why do you like it?

And I thought that perhaps I could ask the photo owners if they would donate some photos to liven up the Wikipedia article about CLTS (, but I can't find any contact person or details on the page.

Does anyone know who is behind this (Malawi Global Sanitation Fund), is it UNICEF in Malawi and if yes, who could I approach?

It's actually surprising that it's so hard to get open access type photos about CLTS, given that CLTS activities are being done with millions of people around the world.

I started a new set here but have only one photo so far, donated by SNV in Ghana:

(there are lots of other CLTS photos around but I am only looking for open access ones, i.e. the kind that can be reused freely for any purpose)]]>
CLTS (Community led total sanitation) and other community led approaches Thu, 30 Apr 2015 12:31:11 +0000