Across the globe, 2.5 billion people lack access to adequate and reliable sanitation services – the lack of effective human waste disposal, both solid and liquid, together with poor hygiene practices pose considerable public health risks globally, and particularly to the rural and urban poor – the disease burden from poor sanitation and hygiene affects major development outcomes, particularly in health, nutrition, education and economic development – whilst sector discourse on sanitation and hygiene focuses on reduction of diseases, to those lacking basic services, particularly women and children, it is also an issue of safety, dignity, respect.
Approaches to rural sanitation and hygiene have shifted progressively from donor handouts to user-financed community led approaches, however sustained improvements have been a challenge, and approaches to enable households to ‘climb the sanitation ladder’ are still far from perfect. The urban context presents ever-growing challenges, with innovations in faecal and solid waste management, business models, and more sophisticated social marketing for behaviour change showing some limited success stories, but clearly there is a long way to go, especially to ensure the inclusion of the poor.
Aguaconsult has project experience providing technical support on sanitation and hygiene to programmes and governments and advising on sustainable services for both water and sanitation from programme to national level, for example advising the Government of Ghana in the development of its national sanitation strategy.
The Aguaconsult team has diverse experience in sanitation and hygiene, covering aspects such as technologies, policy and sector planning, institutional review, financing, behaviour change and market-based approaches, environmental health enforcement, urban services and planning, (local) private sector development, and integrating sanitation and hygiene into wider health and nutrition interventions. For more information please contact Georges Mikhael