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This question always remains, while implementing WASH in Schools.
The one and only obligation of Government is the coverage and this obligation is considered to be met up, once the provisions for the WASH facilities are just existed in the Schools.
In the context of proper WASH in Schools, the most neglected / least bothered issues are as follows:
(i) Proper Operation & Maintenance (O&M;) of the WASH facilities.
(ii) Ensuring involvement of School Management Committee through active community / Parents - Teachers Association.
(ii) Habit formation for WASH activities & regular practice of the same.
(iii) Build up "Take to Home & Community to disseminate" approaches among the students.
(iv) Monitoring & Evaluation of bottlenecks and location / region specific solution approaches.
(v) Child friendliness and capacity building efforts.
With regard to the above said issues, there is the utmost need to formulate appropriate policy and implementation approach to make WASH in School more effective.
Nripendra Kumar Sarma
Guwahati, Assam, India
I agree that the Indicators put forward by the JMP Working Group are one step in right direction.
But the point, I like to highlight here is that the WASH Activities should be included as Specific GOAL, under which the Wins might be included as a sub Goal.
I tried to emphsise on different lines of focus to be considered as agenda under the specific GOAL of WASH Activities. So that the lines of action will be pinpointed to achieve the desired direction.
WASH activities should be included as Individual Goal, unlike that included as a part of Goal No-7 in earlier MDGs. Researchers have already established that the fact that improved WASH activities are the prime need in all fronts including Household and Community level to create far reaching impacts on HUMAN health.
So WASH activites should be a new Goal with renewed focus on the following :
(a) Water Safety and Security including Water Quality Monitoring and necessary precationary / remediation measures.
(b) Priority water scarce / quality affected regions.
(c) Monitoring mechanism for use and maintenance of Sanitation facilities to address bottlenecks leading to slipping back from coverage pattern.
(d) Total Environmental Sanitation including the proper Solid and Liquid Waste Management activities.
(e) Facilitating Operation and Maintenace for WASH infrastructures in households as well as Instititions like, Schools, Community oriented facilities etc. eventually to ensure sustainability.
(f) Instituionalised approach for capacity development to establish social equity / norms for the alround development of the communities with special thrust for the marginal sections.
(g) Massive approach on Hygienic practices for personal / food Hygiene.
(h) Aiming on effectiveness of WASH in Schools, the teachers / students community should be targetted as a major stakeholder with enhanced capacity / involvement.
(i) Necessary efforts / action plan during EMERGENCY SITUATION causing large scale displacement of human habitat. Adequate WASH activities must be prioritised for such displaced population.
(j) Impacts of regions specific Climate Change
(k) Lastly and not the least, the political WILL and SUPPORT for establishing the desired mandate.
Nripendra Kumar Sarma
Public Health Engineering Department, Assam(India)
I am probably a good person but I haven't taken the time to fill out my profile, so you'll never know!
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