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A contextual assessment of GESI in the WASH sector based on a review of national policies, strategies, and implementation practices in Ethiopia.

TitleGender equality and social inclusion overview for the WASH sector in Ethiopia
Publication TypeResearch Report
Year of Publication2021
AuthorsHailegiorgis, B, kebede, A, Lemecha, G, Mekonta, L
Pagination31 p.
Date Published09/2021
PublisherIRC Ethiopia
Place PublishedAddis Ababa, Ethiopia
Publication LanguageEnglish

Gender equality and social inclusion (GESI) is key to sustainable development. It is a key process for ensuring access to resources and services for all. Socially excluded groups have the right to access safe, improved, and affordable WASH facilities in the community and in institutions. Although there is progress in providing access to WASH services for all, women and girls, and persons with disabilities are still disadvantaged. 

In Ethiopia, most WASH facilities are built without considering the diversity of the people living in the community and their different needs. When WASH services are inclusive, everyone benefits including people that are often excluded or marginalised. To provide sustainable WASH services in communities and institutions, the full participation of everyone, especially women and persons with disabilities, at every stage of the process (planning, design, implementation, management) is critical. This will facilitate the empowerment of women and people with disabilities.

As an organisation working in the WASH sector, IRC WASH Ethiopia passionately believes in the idea of leaving no one behind and intends to advocate gender equality and social inclusion to all its partners at different levels to ensure that all WASH projects from inception to service delivery are inclusive. In line with this, IRC WASH Ethiopia is planning to develop a GESI Strategy that will be linked to the design of projects and day-to-day functioning of the country office and influencing actors in the WASH sector to do the same.

The objective of this assessment is to contextually assess GESI in the WASH sector by reviewing national policies, strategies, and implementation practices in Ethiopia. This will enable us to understand the opportunities and challenges for embedding GESI strategies in implementation of interventions. In addition, the assessment aims to provide inputs for the development of IRC WASH Ethiopia’s country programme GESI Strategy. 


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