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Using evidence to improve hygiene and sanitation in Africa

Published on: 10/10/2018

Submit your AfricaSan5 session for subtheme 3 on monitoring by 12 October!

AfricSan5 request for EOI for submissions

AfricaSan5 is bringing together countries and stakeholders around Africa to debate and talk about how to achieve the Ngor Commitments for sanitation and hygiene and Africa and the related SDG targets. Organised by the African Ministers' Council on Water (AMCOW), AfricaSan5 will take place from 18-22 February 2019 in Abidjan, Cote d'Ivoire.

The theme is Transforming Sanitation and Hygiene in Africa and there are four exciting subthemes that address some of the key issues 39 African countries have highlighted while generating reports on progress against the Ngor Commitments. The monitoring of sanitation and hygiene is not just about collecting data but more importantly Using the Evidence to Improve Hygiene and Sanitation. This is the topic of subtheme 3 and we need more submissions before the end of the extended deadline this week, Friday 12 October.

The Ngor Declaration has set out an important vision for sanitation and hygiene in Africa. Countries have committed to eliminate inequalities in access and use and committing to establish government-led monitoring, reporting and learning systems. Even so, half of African countries are making significant progress on being able to monitor sanitation and hygiene, but there remain significant challenges.

In particular, while some systems are in place, there is a problem is assessing and understanding inequalities in access, tracking untreated faecal waste, budget tracking, understanding human resource needs, measuring outcomes in institutional settings and public spaces, communicating results and using data to develop and certify sanitation products and services. Ultimately, tackling these challenges can ensure we are measuring hygiene and sanitation outcomes well and evidence turns to action.

You may have a session to share if you can answer any of these questions:

  • How are vulnerable and unserved groups being identified and understood and the results nationally accepted?
  • How can hygiene and sanitation data be garnered to support advocacy and communication for behaviour change, regulation and performance reviews?
  • How is untreated faecal waste tracked in a way that can guide policy and dialogues in African countries?
  • How can markets for sanitation products and services be developed and standardised / certified?

While innovations such as ISO Standard 30500:2018 on Non-sewered sanitation systems are being developed in Africa, there is still a minimal evidence available that these innovations are being incorporated into country systems. AfricaSan5 provides a unique opportunity to accelerate progress by sharing innovations across Africa.

Nicolas Dickinson, IRC, is leading theme 3 on Monitoring and the Use of Evidence to Improve Hygiene and Sanitation at AfricaSan5 under the theme Transforming Sanitation in Africa. Don’t forget to submit your session by Friday 12 October!

See the subtheme full description on the AfricaSan5 website.