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A WASH View From Jhadol, Udaipur

Published on: 02/05/2016

The challenge of making India open defecation free through WASH Dialogues

While the Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) sector grapples with the challenge of making India open defecation free by 2 October 2019, several issues persist. The WASH Dialogues discussion fora open to all, will bring out these issues and share experiences at regular intervals.

The WASH Dialogues is an initiative of IRC and TARU Leading Edge, two organisations working on drinking water, sanitation and hygiene, collectively known as WASH. The first Dialogue features Georgina Page, an anthropology student from the University of Radboud in The Netherlands. She will present the findings of a three-month study on local experiences of WASH where she studied attitudes towards toilets, daily toilet practices and key influences. From three study locations, Georgina shows how sanitation practices promoted by government-provided toilet infrastructure are linked to water access, gender, health, education, land usage and availability.

Using in-depth qualitative interviewing, group discussions, brief talks and unstructured observations, Georgina has gathered data from families and key informants in three locations in the Jhadol block. In the main location, the Magwas Gram Panchayat, the Government's Swacch Bharat Mission ensured each home has a toilet and the Panchayat was declared open defecation free (ODF) in October 2015. The research reveals local peoples' experiences of the Government campaign, who makes decisions regarding the construction of toilets; and what has changed in popular attitudes and behaviour.

In a small tribal hamlet (called Piplimala), 4 km from Magwas town, few families have a toilet. Therefore, this was an opportunity to examine the experiences and attitudes of those who, lacking toilets, practice open defecation. In the third village called Dhala, 20 km from Magwas, an NGO has been constructing ecosan (dry toilets) that need little water. While some households were provided toilets under the government sanitation programme in 2013, several households lack toilets. Here, the research explored behaviour and attitudes towards the different toilet types.

IRC and TARU Leading Edge invite you to ‘A WASH View From Jhadol, Udaipur’. This is an ethnographic study on issues of drinking water, sanitation and hygiene in the Jhadol Block of Udaipur District, Rajasthan, by Ms Georgina Page, an anthropology student from the University of Radboud, The Netherlands.

This presentation will be held in New Delhi. Venue: Conference Room, TARU Leading Edge, M-6 Hauz Khas, New Delhi-110016. Time: 4:30-5:30 PM, 3 May 2016 

About the speaker

Georgina Page is pursuing a Master’s degree in anthropology at Radboud University in The Netherlands. Before this, she worked for four years in the research team at BBC Media Action, the international development arm of the BBC in London and South Sudan. She also has five years strategic research experience in the UK media industry and has lived for a year in Ghana. Georgina has a BA in Journalism from the University of the Arts, London.