SuSanA India Chapter Thematic Discussion: Addressing the last (female) mile


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SuSanA India Chapter Thematic Discussion: Addressing the last (female) mile

In peri-urban areas and small and medium towns, several studies have found women have problems finding safe and convenient toilets and drinking water. The toilets provided in resettlement colonies and tenements are often inadequate, unsafe and in poor condition. One of the main reasons for bad water and sanitation facilities in these resettlement areas is that women are usually not part of the process of planning and implementation.

In two resettlement colonies of Delhi, a study by WaterAid found most households have individual toilets but these used inappropriate disposal mechanisms that affect the sanitary environment of the colony. There are community toilets, but women do not use them as they are ill-kept and unsafe. Tiruchirappalli in Tamil Nadu, shows a way out of this crisis through community-managed toilets with bathing and washing facilities jointly managed by city authorities, communities and NGOs. In Ahmedabad, Gujarat, under the Slum Networking project the main achievement was empowerment and transformation of women from slums.

Even as most parts of the country have been declared ODF, challenges remain in reaching the ‘last mile’ and providing the differently abled with sanitation. The challenge is particularly acute in the case of women in remote villages, or with special needs. A commonly-overlooked challenge is sanitation needs of pregnant women and the elderly.

This happens because of negative perceptions about women, their role and abilities. Decision-makers are often unaware of gender concerns and assume technical matters are gender neutral in some way. Gender crops up in the selection of ‘beneficiaries’, but even here, they seldom consider intra-household inequalities. Often, gender specialists lack sectoral knowledge, in this case, specific information about water and sanitation.

Self-help groups (SHGs) and community organizations for and of women appear to play a pivotal role in bringing women’s issues into the planning and execution process. Panchayats, in which women have a 1/3 representation, are mandatory local government institutions for development. In rural and urban areas, women elected representatives have played a lead role in sanitation.

This discussion will examine how a ‘universal access’ sanitation programme can prioritise the needs of women, especially those excluded because they live in remote locations, and have temporary of permanent special needs. It will also elicit examples from members about where this has been done successfully, or where it has faced challenges.

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Re: SuSanA India Chapter Thematic Discussion: Addressing the last (female) mile

We are Ruchika and Shiny, we work with IRC, a think and do tank focussed on long term water and sanitation services for all. IRC’s approach is based on the Systems Approach i.e. sustained WASH services can be delivered by strong and competent national systems. Systems are the networks of people, organisations, institutions and resources (the “actors” and “factors”) necessary to deliver services. We consider communities and the women therein as key actors in the system.

Multiple studies, narratives from the field and personal experiences over time have highlighted and reinforced that poor access to water and sanitation disproportionately impact women’s lives. The challenges are heightened when we look at this impact on pregnant women, elderly women and women with disabilities.

There are challenges related to design and location that impact accessibility, privacy, safety, security and ultimately use of toilet facilities. Further, limited access to water has a direct consequence on usability and functionality of the sanitation facilities. These challenges are most pronounced in urban poor and rural settings.

Gender mainstreaming can significantly improve sanitation interventions. It is important to note that gender mainstreaming implies planning for women but more importantly including them in the entire process. There is thus a need for the discourse to go beyond seeing women just as “beneficiaries” of interventions but as driving forces, who can assertively spearhead the sanitation agenda.

Women are best placed to understand their challenges and provide valuable inputs towards the use of the facilities. Involving women from the stage of problem identification, planning and design, implementation and monitoring of sanitation facilities in their communities is one of the key factors to ensure sustainability of the services.

We are seeking your inputs on the following issues regarding the role of women in sanitation and the benefits that have accrued through empowerment and agency.

1. How can a ‘universal access’ sanitation programme prioritise the needs of women, especially those excluded because they live in remote locations, and have temporary or permanent special needs?
2. Examples about where this has been done successfully, or where it has faced challenges.
3. How can equal and active roles of women in planning, design, management and monitoring of sanitation systems be ensured?

The resulting synthesis document will be shared back with the community. It is hoped the information you provide will inform sanitation programmes in the future.
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Re: SuSanA India Chapter Thematic Discussion: Addressing the last (female) mile

Dear Ms. Ruchika Shiva and Ms.Shiny Saha,
I R C, New Delhi.

Pl. accept my well wishes and would like to feel the sanitation problem and gender-issues and give plausible solutions, that are do-able.

1. How can a ‘universal access’ sanitation programme prioritise the needs of women, especially those excluded because they live in remote locations, and have temporary or permanent special needs?

We understand that this issue is given the least priority and no guidelines too are issued. And it appears very complicated.

In such circumstances, out of box solutions are needed , a secure place is sought for placement of toilet seats and the associated discharge facility and appropriate usage of wastes.

Some suggested places where a Community Toilet Complex- CTC can be made:
A school premises is chosen, ideally a girls school can be considered.
If it is a co ed school, still will work out. or a Hospital / Health Centre. / Community space for market, any religious places- temple, mosque, church, Gurudwara, or any others.

Youth volunteers are encouraged to keep watch and ward duties for sanitation services in communities,
If school is not available, then look for public facility viz. bus stand, railway station. Police Station or a Check post Etc.
Or look out for a big house premises, could be of a renown or high moral standing person's house the Community,

These spaces are chosen and temporary toilets are built adjoining them so that the actual precincts of the CTC, is having some protection and also security, to some extent privacy too.

2. Examples about where this has been done successfully, or where it has faced challenges.

No distinct examples are sighted but hopeful that the suggested strategies would work out,
and when done with site specific adaptation Etc. would be delivering well to communities.

SusanA concept note has sighted 3 to 4 examples of not appropriate sanitation in communities.
Drawing a positive response of South based Ngos and community based sanitation practices, which have worked well , we need to emulate and propagate those practices in achieving them in all parts of India.

Of course challenges will be experienced, when we have to provide sanitation to differently -abled, and sanitation needs of pregnant women and the elderly are catered to .
It is a mind set problem, definitely apt awareness and participation can be evolved from communities for helping the needy in the community,

Here we can try and get youth and senior citizens made aware and encouraged to partake in assisting the community,

We can draw persons within the community, who are Ex-service -men/ women, and other forces, retired teachers from schools Etc.

A trust and faith mechanism is worked out, and practices are progressed applying high morals and ethics, ensuring apt code of conduct in society.

Now coming to following correct practices, communities are made aware that “cleanliness is next to godliness” , ie all human-sludges ( night-soil ) need to be disposed off adequately and safely to maintain health and hygiene at all locations in the community. .

Here an important point is to be noted- that the sludges that are removed ex site are duly utilised for need based practices. Solid-sludges are evolved as compost- manure applying community based practices.

It is observed that there is inhibition in society towards using directly night –soil as manure. However when it is admixed with bio-mass ( agri-waste) and gobar ( cow dung ) and the compost is evolved as manure, it has better acceptance and used in agri and veg -farms Etc.

It has been rightly indicated that - Self-help groups (SHGs) and community organizations for, by and of women appear to play a pivotal role in bringing women's issues into the planning and execution process. The concerned SHGs are taken under foster nurture - care of the lead Ngo. They are guided and ensured to perform. Income generating schemes are designed and progressed and well sustained. All these improve the “quality of living” in communities.

Many Case studies are existent, all these are needed to be assessed, analysed and the best feasible mechanism is applied as a pilot, and evolved in service. Projects are made able to be sustained. All these projects provide satisfaction in general and specifically trust and
faith in themselves .

In the concept note it has been brought out that in a village scenario- Panchayats, women have a one third representation, are mandatory for functioning of local government institutions for development. It is of pride to feel that in both rural and urban areas, women elected representatives have played a lead role in water, sanitation and health, WASH- services..

All these factors are pooled and workable practices are evolved as a pilot- project to start.
As time progresses,. all these practices are evolved for achieving the GOI’s,main objective as per Swatch Bharat Abhiyan, SBA, ie to achieve Open Defecation Free ODF status in communities.

Another point to observe for sludges / faecal – solids management:
25% of the urban and rural poor continue to defecate in the open due varied reasons.
This occurs because of un-avoidable reasons. This indiscriminate open defecation cannot be avoided as spaces are not freely available for communities to make toilets facilities. But could be checked to some extent, by adopting a system of ‘Controlled Open Defecation’- COD.

This practice - COD, is done by providing 2 Nos. identical spaces in the open places as used previously by communities for open- defecation. The detailing would be to have one site in use and other one, having been in use earlier is cleaned and maintained. Their use is controlled and rotated.
The spaces in the open are chosen by communities, in consultation amongst themselves, These sets of spaces will be duly allocated in the 1st instance and then approved by ULBs for urban areas or Rural Boards/ Village Panchayats Etc. When choosing toilet spaces for women and children, due regard is given for persons with special needs, also.

Human sludges (Faeces) from these places could be cleared and co-composted with wet waste, bio-mass, cowdung, etc., to produce manure, which is used in agri-farms.
This practice too is sustained, when the community realises the value of manure, when used for improved agri and farm produce etc.

3. How can equal and active roles of women in planning, design, management and monitoring of sanitation systems be ensured?

The Civic Administration passes a directive that women are associated for effective delivery of all essential services. They are specifically involved in planning, design, management, monitoring, operation and maintenance of sanitation systems.

When the system evolved are gainfully delivering the services, then the community feels more confident and go on to improve the systems more and more, over a period of time.

With sanitation system using community-managed toilets, urinals facilities for bathing and washing clothes are also introduced. All these services are jointly managed by city authorities, communities and NGOs.

With well wishes and best regards,

Prof. Ajit Seshadri,
Vels University, Chennai .
Prof. Ajit Seshadri, Senior Faculty in Marine Engg. Deptt. Vels University, and
Environment Consultant (Water shed Mngmnt, WWT, WASH, others) Chennai, India
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Re: SuSanA India Chapter Thematic Discussion: Addressing the last (female) mile

Dear all,

I am sharing some insights on the role of women and women leaders in promoting sanitation. Hope this sparks a little more discussion.

At a time when many national and international media report on the atrocities committed against women in India, the stories of women’s leadership in development remains an oft-ignored story. As India pitches headlong into making toilets in the Swachh Bharat Mission (SBM), there are heart-warming stories of women leading campaigns for better lives in their panchayats against heavy odds. A small percentage of the 271,000 villages that have rid themselves of open defecation can be attributed solely to the efforts of these women.

Research has shown women gain more than men from better sanitation and hygiene. They can use toilets in the safety of their homes and do not have to face insults or harassment when defecating or urinating in the open. Their health improves as they do not have to ‘hold on' until dark. Using toilets reduces the risk of getting urinary tract infections, diarrhoea and water-borne infections. Women, as block development officers, sarpanches, jalabandhus and self-help group (SHG) members, have demonstrated sanitation improvements are possible utilising local resources and strategies.

Each panchayat receives between Rs 5 lakhs and 50 lakhs each year from the government for development programmes a year. A sarpanch can make an enormous difference towards the way these resources are used. The sarpanch is responsible for 29 functions including rural development, health, education, roads and electricity under the Panchayati Raj Act. With a little support by way of training and inspiration from higher-up government officials, sarpanches have made a vast difference to their panchayats.

Sarpanches Lead From The Front

Take the case of Chandramani Jani, the former sarpanch of Bada Kerenga panchayat in Koraput district, Odisha. Each morning, she set out to cajole her fellow villagers to make and use toilets. The scattered hamlets took her a long while to visit but she made it a point to visit each one of them each week and listen to their problems, offer solutions and take action with the block development officer.

“I was persistent. Most toilets were completed in a few days. Some took longer as people wanted better toilets and added bathing areas with their own funds,” said Chandramani. "It was harder to convince them to use toilets, and I had to put in extra efforts to make sure this happened.” Odisha’s Chief Minister Navin Patnaik awarded her for making her panchayat free from open defecation. In Bada Kerenga panchayat, you see no cesspools of water and the streets are devoid of litter, garbage or cow dung. And of course, there is no smell of human excreta wafting in on the breeze.

Rajasthan conjured up images of women in veils divested of any power to take decisions, restricted to home and hearth. But there are exceptions. In Kharda panchayat, Pali district, sarpanch Rekha Kanwar, also a member of one of the Mahila Poorna Shakti self-help groups in the village, made this open defecation free (ODF) in a matter of months. “I heard about how sanitation helps improve women’s health and dignity at a night chaupal with the collector in December 2014. I asked him to help me make my panchayat ODF, and he scheduled a visit of trained motivators who spent five days in the villages."

In the beginning, only 30 families of the 600 in the panchayat had toilets. In about four months, the coverage rose dramatically. In six months, the panchayat was declared ODF. Kanwar says they are regularly used by all family members. SHGs have been instrumental in persuading women to construct and ensure toilets are used by all their family members. Kanwar organised women into teams after the motivators’ sessions to work as Nigrani committees. The streets have a drainage system that takes the water from households to a pond outside the village. They are dry, and there is no garbage strewn in the corners.

In Rajasthan’s Nagaur district’s Dabriyani panchayat, sarpanch Manju Meghwal was similarly inspired to eliminate open defecation at a block meeting. She asked her block's development officer to depute trained motivators who spent five days triggering villagers. She took the lead and set up Nigrani committees in each ward, led by ward members. They conduct rounds of their areas every morning and evening to make sure people use their toilets. Manju makes it a point to be part of these patrols. While toilet coverage increased to 90% from 50%, importantly, people have continued to use them. Dabriyani’s villages are clean.

To be sure, the wastewater from the village collects in a pond outside that is in a sorry shape Manju has made a plan to treat it. “I was told about a natural process to treat this water. I will make an artificial wetland that will beautify the pond and attract birds and animals. Then I will train some people to look after it and keep animals out, so it does not get damaged," she says.

Elsewhere, in Uttar Pradesh, the pradhan of Dharampur panchayat of Bijnor, Mamta Chaudhry, was instrumental in promoting and consolidating sanitation. The quality of toilets is a testament to the success of the campaign in the panchayat: the new toilets have tiles and are spacious while the older ones are smaller and plastered with cement. However, the critical fact is people are using toilets.

Inspired by a meeting with the district collector, she determined to make Dharampur ODF. This panchayat is a trendsetter of sorts as neighbouring panchayats follow its lead. At a meeting of pradhans, Mamta stood up and asked for help from the district’s sanitation team to make her panchayat ODF. With the team, she went house-to-house to motivate people. Emphasising how toilets were crucial for women’s dignity, she stopped people from defecating in the open in 15 days; construction of toilets for all took about 40 days.

What has worked for her and the village is its relative prosperity and the fact her family has dominated village politics since 1985. She beautified a little primary school in her village with a lovely tiled toilet for girls and boys. “On birthdays, I give children soaps and encourage them to speak about handwashing at home,” she says.

Empowered women of self-help groups
In Bondaguda panchayat of Koraput district, Odisha, in 2013 the district government picked 42 SHGs from Mission Shakti to promote sanitation. Their women became entrepreneurs. The Bondaguda Mahila Mandal set up a centre to supply toilet construction materials with a seed capital of Rs 50,000. However, while only below poverty line (BPL) families were eligible for the sanitation subsidy, under the Nirmal Bharat Abhiyan, preceding the Swachh Bharat Mission, even above poverty line (APL) families were too poor to make their own toilets.

One SHG leader Naranga Pujari suggested the subsidy for toilets be given to the community instead of individuals. This worked because of social cohesion among the Kondh tribe that makes up most of the population. The SHG members made bricks, bringing down their costs substantially. Women made toilets where it suited them, near their kitchens. The kitchens were usually large, and nobody could see them going to the latrine. They also made a bathroom, making it more utilitarian. Naranga Pujari became a sanitation champion.

Administrators flex their muscles
Further up the administrative ladder, block development officers (BDOs) have also been instrumental in sanitation. Rekha Gour, the BDO of Parbatsar block in Nagaur, is responsible for 36 panchayats. She rattles off statistics of each panchayat. “Khokhar panchayat had 160 poor families. The local leader Rathore offered to arrange materials on credit. When he ran short of masons, I assigned them from neighbouring panchayats. I sent the motivators for triggering sessions.”

She started a sanitation campaign in October 2014 and later dovetailed it with the district’s approach. To see what was possible, she picked five panchayats, including Khokhar, to make ODF by 2nd October 2015. Using ratri chaupals (night meetings) and public rallies, she made Khokhar ODF. Her campaign picked up in 2016 when the district resource group (DRG) teams were introduced along with several district-level initiatives such as the talk show, Coffee with Collector, for sarpanches who have done notable work. "There have been times I have organised my own calendar for deploying DRG teams rather than letting them sit idle," says Rekha.

Collateral benefits
In West Bengal, Rina Paik is a former sarpanch and a water and sanitation champion in Bapuji Gram Panchayat. She showed her leadership skills when she joined a community healthcare management initiative as the group leader. She was trained by a local NGO to repair handpumps and put her skills to use setting up a small business. Now, she manages the water supply systems in two panchayats. She has the confidence to speak with the samiti officers and even the district administration. “I have a government license to bid for water and sanitation contracts in two panchayats. I have earned over Rs 1 lakh over two years and employ 7-8 boys.

These women are educated and have supportive families. The sarpanches take their own decisions. Manju says, “My husband is busy with his own work. We do not speak about panchayat affairs at home. I take decisions for the panchayat myself. After all, I have been voted sarpanch.” This despite the fact the former sarpanch was from her husband’s family.

There is talk of fostering local leaders who can ensure development works are well executed. Sarpanchs are these local leaders who are grounded and with five-year terms can make a significant contribution.

Complementing their efforts and helping them succeed is a responsive district administration. District collectors/magistrates, chief executive officers and executive engineers have shown how to engage with and provide space for women to feel comfortable while making their case. In several district offices, groups of women sarpanches can be seen walking in with their demands and grievances.

Women waited outside and were always called separately. They are no less vocal in their meetings that were always held separately from men. What is heartening is even in Rajasthan and Western UP, where women mostly shroud their faces, these outspoken women had no such compunctions in front of men. Mamta Chaudhry said, "If we cover our faces, how do we expect to be taken seriously by these officials?" She nicely sums up how some women sarpanches and pradhans have ‘come out' and showed the way to countless others how to be a leader.

They have not entirely broken out of the gender stereotypes. Sarpanch or not, all have to manage household chores and children. Their position has also helped gain currency within the village. Women from other households take their word seriously. Men also listen. But for every Mamta Chaudhry, there are many whose words do not filter through the veil. These local leaders have seldom found mention. But their bold steps inspire many others.
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  • sunetralala
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Re: SuSanA India Chapter Thematic Discussion: Addressing the last (female) mile

Dear all,

How can a ‘universal access’ sanitation programme prioritise the needs of women, especially those excluded because they live in remote locations, and have temporary or permanent special needs?

Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs) and Government-implemented WASH programmes have incorporated structured approaches for including women. The Jalanidhi project in Kerala ensured that 52% of the households belonged to Below Poverty Line (BPL) and 16% from the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes, with a specific focus on women from disadvantaged groups. About 3,700 schemes with 100% house connections and over 80,000 toilets were completed. The Jalswarajya project in Maharashtra ensured a policy of entrusting the O&M of water supply schemes to women's Self Help Groups. Around 250 villages engaged women SHGs for O&M. The women collected the water tax and paid some percentage as incentive. This ensured that women have a greater say in the maintenance and upkeep of village water projects, in addition to ensuring financial incentives for their water works. Utthan, has been initiating various programmes on community-led viable alternatives carried out by various village-level institutions involving women and community-based organisations leading to improved gender outcomes in terms of access to water and sanitation facilities. Each of these projects identified essential phases covering a number of activities; corresponding checks can also be undertaken to ensure equity; these phases can be broadly classified as: a. Planning & Institutional (Capacity) Building Phase; b. Implementation Phase, c. & Evaluation Phase.

Examples about where this has been done successfully, or where it has faced challenges.

Watershed Organisation Trust (WOTR): Watershed Organisation Trust (WOTR) is engaged in watershed management in five states of India. It is WOTR's policy that all drinking water and sanitation activities should be implemented by the Women's Water Supply and Sanitation Committees. The project funds are transferred to the committee's bank account. The technical and social mobilisation support is provided by WOTR.

WOTR has implemented drinking water and sanitation projects under the Integrated Domestic Water Management (IWDM) project in Maharashtra establishing drinking water and sanitation committees (with 50 per cent women members), which are the sub-committees of the Gram Panchayat (GP) as per the GP Act 1958. The phase-wise implementation of such a project in Kutewadi village, Parner Taluka of 80 households with 578 individuals can be depicted in a structured manner in a programmatic flow. The total cost of the project was Rs.4,84,842.00 out of which the community's contribution was 4Rs.87,487.00 (18%); As a result of WOTR's interventions two drinking water storage tanks have been constructed with a capacity of 40,000 and 10,000 litres each.

Phase one, the Planning and Institutional (Capacity) Building Phase, involves 6 months with the following activities: (A) Initial field visits to assess needs and people's willingness to contribute to the project; (B) Selection of village (C) Initial visit to assess technical feasibility of project (D) Identification of key leaders and CBOs (E) Awareness campaigns and rapport building: (meetings, Home visits, Gram sabha, Women's Gram sabhas) (F) Resolution of the GP and Gram sabha (G) PRA exercises to gather data and involvement with the village community to understand the needs and difficulties (H) Formation/reorganisation of SHGs, formation of Women's Water Committee (I) Exposure visit for the community and for women's groups (J) Finalisation of the proposal with detailed plan and estimates prepared with technical support from WOTR team (K) Submission of proposal to WOTR for sanction (K) Scrutiny of the proposal by WOTR and issuing 'Letter of Offer' to Pani Samiti along with the sanctioned budget and Terms and Conditions of Agreement.

The second phase, the Implementation Phase, requires 1-1.5 years involving: (A) Formation of subcommittees such as Social Audit Committee, and purchases committee (B) Demand for the first instalment along with the details of Action Plan for the first instalment (C) Release of the first instalment (D) Training about project planning and management (procedures and records, roles and responsibilities of various sub-committees) (E) Implementation of the activities as per the sanctioned letter and Action Plan (F) Monitoring from the regional/head office (G) Request for the second instalment by the Pani Samiti (H) Release of second instalment to the Pani Samiti's bank account (I) Implementation of the activities as per the Action Plan (J) Second training to the Pani Samiti and other committee members, key leaders, GP members. (K) Release of third and final instalment and (L) Implementation of the activities as per plan.

The Monitoring and Evaluation Phase, which starts during the implementation of the project and continues for 6 months post-completion involves: (A) Visits to the worksite and attending Pani Samiti and Gram panchayat meetings (B) Inspection of work sites and (C) Assessing the use of toilets, village cleanliness, repairs and maintenance and overall maintenance of the assets created, maintenance fund, etc.

Jal Bhagirati Foundation (JBF): The Jal Bhagirati Foundation (JBF) has been working in the water-stressed Marwar region of Rajasthan, where the average rainfall varies from 100 - 500 mm. JBF has been re-establishing the tradition of rainwater harvesting (RWH) for meeting water needs. This is being done with communities and making men and women accountable for programmatic interventions. JBF entrusts the management responsibilities to the community and limits its role to that of a facilitator.
When communities approach JBF for support to initiate work, village clusters are identified based on criteria such as the level of distress in the cluster, depleting natural resources, livelihood insecurity, and the potential of the village community to collectively prioritise and execute the work. Technical feasibility is another crucial factor and analysis of all these criteria helps JBF identify the potential clusters.

After this, a Jal Sabha (Water User Association) of those who are willing to participate in the proposed work is formed. The Jal Sabha must have 20% women representation. This is followed by the election of office bearers, one of whom must be a woman, who acts on behalf of the members of the Jal Sabha, undertakes the execution of the work and mobilisation of community resources. The Sabha initiates discussion at the community level, prioritises issues, decides on the village contribution and shares the action plan along with its technical and financial details with JBF.

The Jal Sabha is responsible for the creation of a Jal Kosh (Water Fund) for the execution of projects. The community contributes 50% of the funds, while another 50% is contributed by JBF. Upon completion of the project, the 50% community contribution is refunded to the community. Prior to programme execution, the Jal Sabha also forms a women's group within the Jal Sabha. In addition, women are also assisted to form into self-help groups (SHGs) to generate other sources of income.

The working of the JBF projects show four broad and overlapping phases for each RWH project can be identified. The first phase, Community Mobilisation and Planning Phase, takes 4-6 months and requires situational analysis including participatory rural appraisal to assess technical and social feasibility, resource mapping, preparation of village-level plans, community mobilisation and involvement, and organising Jal Sabha and Women's Jal Sabha.

The next phase, the Institutional (Capacity) Building Phase with final Approval in-built, requires 6-11 months and involves Institutional Building. This is achieved by the formation of village level Jal Sabha; Capacity building to Committee members; contribution by Committee Members, detailed planning, designs and project approval.

The Implementation Phase requires 3 - 4 months for RWH structures and 2-3 years for sanitation projects (for a village, with an average of 200 households). Here the activities involve Source Work such as reviving RWH structure/sanitation based on village meetings using the village plan, initiation of work – technical measurements, monitoring, final measurements and validation, and completion of source work.

The final phase, Monitoring and Evaluation Phase, requires 12 months and involves Maintenance of Source/toilets, ensuring proper functioning of Committees formed, revising management plan, exposure visit, capacity building and conflict resolution.

How can equal and active roles of women in planning, design, management and monitoring of sanitation systems be ensured?

Gender analysis frameworks have a long history in development practice to guide strengthened gender outcomes, and opportunities exist to learn from such frameworks to support implementation of WASH programmes in developing countries, including India. A paper reviewed seven well-established gender analysis frameworks from the Indian WASH context vis-à-vis six key categories, viewed as critical components to gender outcomes and vital to the sustained success of WASH programmes, to develop an improved compilation, referred to as the hybrid framework. The hybrid framework combines the strengths of the seven previously established frameworks for optimizing gender outcomes and aims to identify the opportunities for both men and women to shape WASH programmes to meet their intended gender and equity objectives. This framework provides a potential platform for local-level processes to use a comprehensive set of quantitative and qualitative indicators under each of the developed six categories provided further field testing and appropriate modification.

The framework is available at

Sunetra Lala
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  • Marine Chief Engineer by profession (1971- present) and at present Senior Faculty in Marine Engg. Deptt. Vels University, Chennai, India. Also proficient in giving Environmental solutions, Prof. Ajit Seshadri, Environment Consultant located at Chennai, India
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Re: SuSanA India Chapter Thematic Discussion: Addressing the last (female) mile

Dear Sunetra.
Indeed a detailed compilation of diversified WASH projects have been given of varied objectives.
As needed for execution of specific projects, working examples can be selected and perfected with their own site specific inputs.
Offering appreciation on a vivid compilation of data, give our well wishes to Ms. Sunetra.
Prof. Ajit Seshadri, Senior Faculty in Marine Engg. Deptt. Vels University, and
Environment Consultant (Water shed Mngmnt, WWT, WASH, others) Chennai, India
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