Challenges WASH sector actors in Ghana face in increasing access to sanitation

  • conniebenjamin
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SuSanA at the National Stock-taking Forum in Kumasi Ghana. New members introduce yourselves!

A presentation on SuSanA and upcoming opportunities for Ghana through the alliance was given at the National Stock-Taking Forum in Kumasi, Ghana.

It has been an excellent event of sharing knowledge, learning and insightful discussion driven by the Ministry of Sanitation and Water Resources (MSWR).

A very warm welcome to all new members from Ghana! Feel free to introduce yourselves in the chat box below.

We are excited to support the MSWR to hold workshops and learning sessions in Ghana.

Further information on the event will be posted below.

Kind Regards,
Connie

Connie Benjamin
Knowledge and Network Intern Sanitation
WaterAid
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  • ainulfirdatun
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Re: SuSanA at the National Stock-taking Forum in Kumasi Ghana. New members introduce yourselves!

Hi Connie,

Now I know the reason why the SuSanA Secretariat received many new member applications from Ghana today.

Welcome to the SuSanA network!

Greetings from the SuSanA Secretariat,
Ainul
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  • Seyram
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Re: Challenges WASH sector actors in Ghana face in increasing access to sanitation

WASH sector actors in Ghana are faced with a myriad of challenges as they work to increase access to sanitation.
This is particularly worrying as only 15% of Ghana's 28 million people have access to improved unshared sanitation with 31.1% of the population still practicing open defecation.
The Ministry of Sanitation and Water Resources in collaboration with SuSanA will be holding a discussion session with sector actors in the Wa Municipality of Ghana's Upper West Region to distil the challenges they face in their work and to see the knowledge support that the SuSanA platform can provide them in addressing some of the identified challenges.
Prior to this discussion session, the following have been collated as the sanitation challenges faced by the people of Wa
• Wa, the capital of the Upper West Region with a population of about 126,000 people does not have a landfill site nor a demarcated area for the construction of one in the future.
• Faecal sludge is not treated before disposal
• Most households do not have toilets
• Monitoring by environmental health officers to ensure houses granted permits for construction have toilets included when built is not happening due to lack of resources
• Interference (people know people who plead for leniency when sanitation offenders are caught)
• Public toilets are not kept clean. A situation which forces people to opt for open defecation
• Absence of up to date data for proper planning

Programme Officer with WaterAid Ghana
I believe in WaterAid's vision of a world where everyone everywhere has access to safe WASH
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  • conniebenjamin
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Re: Challenges WASH sector actors in Ghana face in increasing access to sanitation

Do any SuSanA members have experience of addressing similar challenges to the above in their work?

Do any SuSanA members have relevant resources to share?


Please feel free to post below! Your contributions will be taken to the workshop.

Connie Benjamin
Knowledge and Network Intern Sanitation
WaterAid
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  • CAYA
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Re: Challenges WASH sector actors in Ghana face in increasing access to sanitation

To convince people to build toilets, it is important that you address their specific issues.
  • If it is economic, then some sort of support- loan, sponsor, a toilet fund
  • if it is social then using the right messaging, eg sharing the health benefits, the safety of women, medical cost savings, improvement in productivity, improvement in growth of children etc
  • If it is a taboo to discuss the issue, then rather than finger pointing, use examples from other communities, countries, eg even people in India are taking a loan to build toilets and many have seen health benefits of that
    Assigning a community leader- Identify a strong leader who can help convince people, go door to door, organise group discussions, share success stories
Keeping Public toilets clean is a challenge for most. Continued messaging such as clean up after yourself, leave it clean-get it clean, etc helps. If you can get a local sponsor who can pay for the maintenance + small toilet usage fee that might help.

Hope this helps.
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Re: Challenges WASH sector actors in Ghana face in increasing access to sanitation

The challenges are well known.
What is needed is also known. Some of these include:
Strengthened decentralization, especially financial decentralization so that the necessary funds are available at the local level.
Committed and effective leadership at the local government level which champions sanitation and ensures accountability so that results are realized.
Incentives across multiple levels-- local government, traditional authorities and communities -- to motivate change and enable them to be sustained.
Inclusive community economic development and wealth creation.
Effective and sustained behaviour change communication.
Sustained demand from high level leadership for successful results which is clearly linked to rewards and/or sanctions
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  • LucyStevens
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Re: Challenges WASH sector actors in Ghana face in increasing access to sanitation

Hi Seyram

Practical Action has worked in a number of towns in Africa and South Asia of a similar size, and with some similar problems.

Although FSM is a hot topic at the moment, our experience is that the place to start is with ensuring uptake and use of toilets. But in doing that, you need to have an eye to the future need for emptying, and gradually begin working on systems for that.

Together with the CLTS Knowledge Hub and Plan International, we have recently published a guide I think you would find really helpful. It documents how to adapt and use CLTS tools for urban contexts to trigger and boost the construction and use of toilets, to think about 'institutional triggering' (how to get all the relevant stakeholders on board) and how to start thinking about FSM in the meantime.

It is available for free download here: www.developmentbookshelf.com/doi/book/10.3362/9781780447360

I'd be really interested to hear how you get on, and whether you find the guide useful.

Lucy - Senior Policy Adviser, Practical Action
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  • conniebenjamin
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Re: Challenges WASH sector actors in Ghana face in increasing access to sanitation

For details of the SuSanA workshop in Upper West region see this forum post: forum.susana.org/54-wg-1-capacity-develo...er-west-region#26148

Connie Benjamin
Knowledge and Network Intern Sanitation
WaterAid
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Re: Challenges WASH sector actors in Ghana face in increasing access to sanitation

To everyone following this thread, I'd like to point out a presentation given by Ada and Sarah at the recent SuSanA meeting in Stockholm:

Ada Oko-Williams, Seyram Asimah (WaterAid): Modelling North South Collaboration on Knowledge Management
www.susana.org/images/SuSanA_Meeting_26/...-SuSanA-Aug-2018.pdf

(or link to the page with all presentations:
www.susana.org/en/news-and-events/sanita...na-meeting-stockholm )

This slide explains WaterAid's aim:

Aims

Embed active engagement with SuSanA and a
culture of knowledge sharing and learning
within Ghana’s new ministry of sanitation.

• Increase global awareness and
understanding of the sector in Ghana.
Encourage engagement in the SuSanA
platform of Ghanaian stakeholders.

• Sustainable model with potential for
replication elsewhere.


Here is an interesting slide from the presentation:



Be sure to also view Ada's and Sarah's presentation on Youtube (go to time 33:38, or a little earlier if you want to hear the introduction of the two speakers):



Regards,
Elisabeth

Community manager and chief moderator of this forum
funded via SEI project until January 2019 ( www.susana.org/en/resources/projects/details/127 )

Dr. Elisabeth von Muench
Independent consultant located in Brisbane, Australia
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Sanitation Wikipedia project leader: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:WikiProject_Sanitation
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  • cecile
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Re: Challenges WASH sector actors in Ghana face in increasing access to sanitation

Dear Connie and partners from Ghana,

I went to Ghana on an assignment in 2017 and held many interviews and group discussions with sanitation stakeholders in Ga West and Kumasi. Many factors are important such as private sector support, awareness raising, developing financing options through micro-finance etc. but the commitment of both municipalities was key to improving access to sanitation. One of the conclusions of the assignment was the following:
"The commitment of municipalities in Ghana translated concretely into municipal sanitation planning, administrative rules and regulations, laws, a moratorium and resource attribution (Environmental Health Officers) that encourages owners to equip their compounds with toilets and monitors conformity to the standards set for public latrines."
In Ga West, while the municipality encouraged the construction of latrines in compounds, they also clearly engaged on upgrading the status of public latrines through the establishment of standards and regular monitoring (e.g. monthly).
In terms of tools and approach Ga West was also interesting because they combined encouragement and enforcement activities.
These municipalities could be approached for knowledge sharing and examples of good practice.
I hope this helps!
Best regards,

Cécile

Cécile Laborderie
MAKATI Environnement
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