Wednesday, 30 November 2011

Journée mondiale des toilettes : Le temps d’écouter les communautés !

Inna Guenda Segueda, Communications Officer, WaterAid Burkina Faso a écrit ce blog au sujet des Crisis Talks au Burkina Faso.

« L’accès aux latrines et à l’eau potable est une préoccupation quotidienne surtout pour nous les femmes. C’est vrai que des efforts sont faits mais cela demeure insatisfaisant. Mais même si le maire seul ne peut pas tout faire, il peut trouver encore des partenaires qui interviendront pour nous faciliter la tache. Qu’est ce que monsieur le maire entend faire pour changer la situation d’ici à 2015 ? » Ainsi s’exprimait Ouédraogo Lizéta, une femme de la commune de Kirsi qui n’a pas voulu rater l’occasion à elle offerte de s’exprimer devant le maire de sa commune sur l’accès à l’eau potable et l’assainissement.

A plusieurs centaine de Km de Kirsi les réalités sont les mêmes. Assétou BARRY/ABA, représentante le village de Lao Peulh situé dans la zone périphérique d’Ouagadougou, témoigne qu’aucune des 31 concessions que compte son village de 347 habitants ne dispose de latrines. Les femmes en couche sont obligées de déféquer dans des sachets plastiques avant de les jeter dans la nature car la tradition leur interdit de déféquer dans la nature. Elle dit ne pas être fiers de leur comportement mais ils n’ont pas de choix.
« Quand nous allons à la recherche de l’eau au forage nous mettons du temps. Mon mari croyait que je me promenais pour ne pas faire la cuisine. Il m’a battue et c’est mon beau père qui m’a secourue. Ce dernier a demandé alors à mon mari d’aller passer une journée au forage et quand il l’a fait j’ai retrouvé la paix. »

Poser des actions concrètes

Ces témoignages ont été entendus respectivement lors des commémorations de la journée mondiale des toilettes le 19 Novembre à Kirsi et le 24 Novembre à Saaba au Burkina Faso. Pour l’occasion, WaterAid et ses partenaires de mise en œuvre Sahel Solidarité, SOS Sahel International et Association les Mains Unis du Sahel ont opté pour une initiative dénommée «Écoutons les communautés s’exprimer sur la crise de l’eau et de l’assainissement ».

Cette activité voulait rompre avec les cérémonies habituelles en donnant la parole aux communautés touchées par la crise de l’eau et de l’assainissement de s’exprimer. Dans les deux communes, femmes, hommes et enfants sont sortis profiter de la parole qui leur était donnée en présence de divers acteurs, des autorités provinciales et nationales, des journalistes, des représentants de la société civile, des hommes de culture, des élus locaux et des membres de communautés.

A Saaba, sur sollicitation du Réseau d’Information et de Communication pour l’Hygiène, l’Eau Potable et l’Assainissement (RICHE) les différents groupes représentés ont pris chacun l’engagement de conduire une action spécifique pour l’amélioration de l’accès à l’eau et à l’assainissement. Ainsi, le parrain de la cérémonie de commémoration de Saaba, M. Simon Pierre GOUEM, Directeur Général de la compagnie d’assurance GA vie s’engage à appuyer tous les projets qui lui seront soumis par WaterAid en faveur de l’accès aux services d’eau potable et l’assainissement. Il avoue avoir été très ému par les témoignages, lui qui participe pour la première fois à une activité de telle envergure sur l’eau et l’assainissement : « J’ai été sensibilisé à la question » dit-il.

Les journalistes ont quant à eux, promis de suivre les engagements pris par les acteurs. « Nous voulons des actes concrets que nous allons évaluer à la célébration de la journée mondiale des toilettes de 2012 » se justifie le Coordonnateur du RICHE, Dieudonné Soubeaga.

Dans la commune de Kirsi, des actes concrets ont été posés. Deux femmes vont bénéficier de l’appui de WaterAid pour la construction de latrine dans leur ménage. Elles ont été les grands vainqueurs de la course cycliste intitulée « Les femmes de Kirsi courent pour les latrines » organisée à l’occasion de la journée mondiale des toilettes. Cette activité symbolique visait à rappeler que l’accès à l’assainissement est un droit à revendiquer comme tout autre et témoigne de l’importance des toilettes dans la vie des femmes de Kirsi en particulier. Dix-neuf femmes ont pris part à cette course longue de douze Km. Toutes les participantes ont été récompensées du savon.

Malgré le tableau peu reluisant peint lors des témoignages des communautés, un espoir existe. C’est le message que la communauté de Darsalam est venue porter à leurs communes sœurs. Dans ce village situé en zone périphérique d’Ouagadougou il est interdit de déféquer à l’air libre grâce au déclenchement de l’approche Assainissement Total Porté par les communautés. Il y a donc de l’espoir et certaines solutions sont à porter des mains des communautés.

40 Walks for Water and Sanitation are already planned!

Alexandra Chitty is an intern at End Water Poverty. Here, she writes about the campaign activities End Water Poverty's partners and members will be undertaking around World Water Day 2012.

We are really excited that 45,000 people have already signed up to Walk for Water and Sanitation around World Water Day next year.

The walks will take place around World Water Day, 22 March, and so far 40 organisations across the globe have started planning their walks! Walks for Water and Sanitation will be taking place in Pakistan, India, Bangladesh, Malaysia, Togo, Kenya, Nigeria, Australia, Norway, Moldova, the USA, the UK, and many more locations!

Liberia CSO WASH Working Group walking for water and sanitation in Liberia, 2011


Organisations such as A Better Community for All, Waterwheel, Khairpur Rural Development Organization, ONG Jeunes Volontaires pour l'Environnement, Udgam Charitable Trust, Knowledge Discovery, Aid Organization, SEDS, Sustainable Sanitation Design and Better Education for All Foundation are all planning Walks for Water and Sanitation in March 2012. They have many motivations for walking including:
· Ensuring clean water and adequate sanitation for all throughout the world
· Promoting and delivering hygiene education nationally
· Wanting water for to become a basic right in national constitutions
· Encouraging ministers to establish a policy on safe drinking water

Most importantly they are all walking to demand more than promises – they want to see real, tangible action being taken by governments to end the water and sanitation crisis.

A key moment in achieving this is the second Sanitation and Water for All High Level Meeting taking place in April 2012. This is where the Finance ministers from the Global North and South will meet to act upon the water and sanitation crisis. By acting together, in our thousands, all over the world, we can make governments take the actions needed to ensure clean water and sanitation for all.

We need you to get involved and make a stand! Visit: http://www.worldwalksforwater.org/eng to find out more and to sign up to take part.

Wednesday, 23 November 2011

Crisis Talks on World Toilet Day: six metre high toilet in the Netherlands!

Jessica Bekker works for Simavi in the Netherlands, a founding member of the End Water Poverty campaign. Here, she shares news of the Crisis Talk that took place on World Toilet Day in Amsterdam

On World Toilet Day, Saturday November 19 2011, Simavi organized a Crisis Talk on the Dam Square in the centre of Amsterdam. By putting a giant six-metre high toilet (the equivalent of 2 floors) on the Dam, the public health organization drew attention to the fact that 2.6 billion people still do not have access to a toilet, and launched a report about the Dutch chances for involvement in water and sanitation at international level. A spectacular singing act performed by “Toilet Ladies” added some more fun to the event!


Report
During this event Simavi presented the report 'Roll up your sleeves' to the media. The report shows that, in 2014, the Dutch government invest only 63 million Euro into water, sanitation and hygiene compared to the 81 million Euro that will be invested during 2012. The Dutch Lower House are meeting to discuss this foreign development budget in the next week and this report urges them to invest more money in water and s
anitation. It emphasises the importance of the second Sanitation and Water for All High Level Meeting taking place in April 2012. This is where the Finance ministers from developing countries and the ministers of Development Cooperation from the donor countries meet to really get down to business. It is important that the Dutch government rolls up its sleeves and once more shows leadership to make this meeting successful.

'Roll up your sleeves' features Dr Catherine Mwango from ANEW and Doreen Wandera from UWASNET, both End Water Poverty member networks!


Signal
With this Crisis Talk, Simavi gave a powerful signal to politicians to show them they need to act in order to clean up the pressing shortage of toilets across the world.
Each day over 4,000 children under the age of five die due to preventable water-related illnesses. Clean toilets will prevent infectious diseases like cholera and diarrhoea from spreading any further

http://www.simavi.nl/simavi/indexuk.do

The huge toilet in Dam Square!

Monday, 21 November 2011

Crisis Talks with MPs across the UK!

Alexandra Chitty is an intern at End Water Poverty. Here, she writes about the Crisis Talks that have been taking place in the UK over the past week.

In the run up to World Toilet Day, 19 November 2011, campaigners across the UK have been engaging in Crisis Talks with MPs about the water and sanitation crisis which is killing 4,000 children under the age of 5 every day.

WaterAid supporters have been meeting their MPs to talk about the fundamental role water and sanitation provision plays in development. And they have been emphasising the importance of the Sanitation and Water for All High Level Meeting (HLM), an international meeting to be held in Washington DC on April 20th 2012 when world leaders from the Global North and South will meet to act upon the water and sanitation crisis.

WaterAid supporters have spoken with Cambridge MP Julian Huppert, Edinburgh East MP Sheila Gilmore and Wirral South MP Alison McGovern amongst others – a total of 20 Crisis Talks have already taken place across the UK!

Crisis Talks are addressing the detrimental impact that lack of water and sanitation can have on the wider social environment of developing countries - health, education and nutrition are all adversely affected, and women and girls are particularly vulnerable. They frequently risk being sexually assaulted when walking to fields to defecate or when using latrines in remote locations, and they are often required to walk long distances in rural areas to collect water which prevents girls from attending school and women from engaging in economic activities.

WaterAid supporters met Jonathan Evans, MP for Cardiff North

It is time to stop this crisis and that is why WaterAid supporters have been calling on MPs to encourage them to prioritise WASH and to ensure ministerial representation at the High-Level Meeting. It is vital that this unique opportunity for real political and financial change is harnessed and that Finance and Development Ministers commit to ensuring that enough resources are available to be spent where they are needed most and in the way that is most effective.

Friday, 18 November 2011

New video: What are Crisis Talks?

Fleur Anderson, International Campaign Coordinator at End Water Poverty talks about the Crisis Talks happening in twenty countries across the globe on and around World Toilet Day!

Crisis Talk in Nepal today!

Tomorrow is World Toilet Day and Crisis Talks will be taking place across the globe this weekend as communities speak out urgently on the water and sanitation crisis. And we're excited to report that one of the first of these Crisis Talks has just taken place in Nepal!

Sanitary workers reported on the sanitation crisis to their Minister of Local Development and State Minister of Finance. They displayed a photo exhibition of public toilets to highlight the need to improve sanitation and a documentary was shown on the state of toilets in urban areas. And we already have some fantastic photos of these events!


There will be Crisis Talks in 16 further countries during the weekend so good luck to everyone organising events!

Thursday, 17 November 2011

Crisis Talks in Liberia this Saturday!


Prince D. Kreplah is the Chairman of the Liberia CSOs WASH working group, a joint advocacy initiative of six local Liberian NGOs and faith based organisations. Mr. Kreplah talks about the Crisis Talks being organized by these organisations in seven counties on and around World Toilet Day!

Liberia witnessed widespread civil war from 1989-2003. The war displaced over two million people and damaged infrastructure and basic social services such as water, sanitation and hygiene. The Poverty Reduction Strategy (PRS) estimates that ‘only 25 percent of Liberians have access to safe drinking water and just 14 percent have access to human waste collection and disposal facilities.’ Coverage varies from county to county for water from 7% to 66%, and for sanitation from 9% to 25%. In rural areas, access is even lower, particularly in the South East of the country where four of six counties have the lowest levels of access to safe drinking water in the country.

It is against this background that six Liberian civil society networks organisations seek to strengthen their collaboration and potential through the creation of a joint advocacy network—the Liberian CSOs WaSH (Water, Sanitation and Hygiene) Working Group. This network raises awareness, influences policy change and mobilises action.

On and around World Toilet Day, 19 November 19 2011, the members of the Liberia CSOs WASH Working Group will organize Crisis Talks in seven of the country’s fifteen counties including Bong, Bomi, Gbarpolu, Lofa, Nimba, Montserrado, and Margibi.

Each of these Crisis Talks will involve five people affected by the water and sanitation crisis speaking to explain how lack of access to WASH is impacting people’s health and economic and social well-being. Overall, more than 700 political leaders, policy makers, civil society executives, youth leaders, chiefs, women, elders and slum community dwellers will attend the five crisis talks and sixty victims and expert witnesses will testify before representatives from the media, civil society and public service.

A brochure containing recommendations on the way forward from those affected and experts will then be circulated to decision makers and partners. There will also be a video documentary made at each Crisis Talk voicing the opinions of slum communities affected by the crisis including school children, people with disabilities, women and hard to reach community dwellers.

Members of the Working Group will then meet with the delegation of decision makers who will be attending the Sanitation and Water for All High Level Meeting in April 2012. They will share the voices of those affected by the water and sanitation crisis and the opinions of civil society and share their expectations about how the delegation should prepare for and participate in the meeting.

Tuesday, 15 November 2011

Crisis Talks update!

Fleur Anderson, International Coordinator of End Water Poverty, shares the latest news on Crisis Talks taking place across the globe this weekend

Ordinary people speak out!

End Water Poverty member organizations will be holding public hearings in local communities, and with government ministers, where ordinary people can speak out about the effect of the sanitation crisis on their lives.

What’s the Crisis?

Very painful stomach cramps, missing school from illness, deaths from diarrhoea, continual lack of energy, and very undermining and undignified living conditions are some of the day-to-day realities caused by the global sanitation crisis. Despite a huge need for action – nearly one in three people globally do not have a clean place to go to the toilet – sanitation is not high on the political agenda. At current rates of progress, the Millennium Development Goals on sanitation won’t be met for over 200 years.

‘Crisis Talks’ are taking place in 16 countries this weekend using the the occasion of World Toilet Day to bring attention to the sanitation crisis, and demand that governments take a lead on solving this crisis. In Asia a shocking two-thirds of people do not have basic sanitation, and in Africa, diarrhoea is the biggest killer of children.

Action in 16 countries!

In Mali, four days of events are being held in the lead up to World Toilet Day whilst in the UK constituents are already holding personal meetings with their MPs. In Liberia, public hearings are taking place in three counties and in Malawi, Talks are being held in the heart of the slums. In DRC, public events are being held in Kinshasa and Bukavu and in Nepal, there are campaigns for public toilets and to improve the conditions of sanitary workers. Further ‘Crisis Talks’ are being held in Holland, Uganda, Sierra Leone, Tanzania, Nigeria, Zambia, Burkina Faso, Togo, Cameroon, Burundi, and Bangladesh. Take a look at our map for more information!

Global Fast Track

Crisis Talks are being held starting from World Toilet Day and leading up to a major international meeting on Water and Sanitation to be held by Finance and Development Ministers in Washington DC on April 20th 2012 – the Sanitation and Water for All High Level Meeting.

This Meeting is the best opportunity yet to raise global political attention, agree to focus budget on the communities that need it most, and move sanitation into the global fast-track.

So good luck to all those organizing events, and if you would like to organize one in your country please get in touch: fleuranderson@endwaterpoverty.org

Monday, 14 November 2011

New template press release for your Crisis Talk!

With less than a week to go until World Toilet Day, we're incredibly excited about the Crisis Talks that will be taking place across the globe!

Crisis Talks are happening in almost 20 countries, from Cameroon to Bangladesh, Nigeria, Togo and the Netherlands. In Malawi, a Crisis Talk hearing is taking place in Ndirande township to ensure decision makers are brought directly to the crisis and ommunities affected by a lack of clean water and safe sanitation are presenting their demands through drama, recitals, dances and quizzes! In Liberia, there will be public hearings held in Monrovia, Montserrado, Nimba and Grand Bassa to highlight the extent of the crisis whilst plenary discussions and debates are planned in Mali and Burundi.

View Crisis Talks in a larger map

If you are organising a Crisis Talk, our new template press release will help you to get in touch with journalists, invite them to your event and ask them to report about the water and sanitation crisis. Please add information about the situation in your country and about the Crisis Talk you have planned!

Le modèle de communiqué de presse pour votre Crisis Talk est désormais disponible en français!

And remember - it's not too late to organise a Crisis Talk! These events can happen anytime from now until the Sanitation and Water for
All High-Level Meeting on 20 April 2012! Get in touch with Fleur on fleuranderson@endwaterpoverty.org if you are interested in taking part.

Tuesday, 8 November 2011

Crisis Talk plans in Malawi!

With Crisis Talks kicking off on World Toilet Day next Saturday 19 November, it's exciting to hear about the great events being planned across the globe!

Here, George from New Restoration Plan in Malawi talks about their plans to hold a Crisis Talk in a slum, bringing politicians and journalists directly to the issue being discussed:



There are Crisis Talks planned from Liberia to London, Togo to Pakistan, Nigeria to the Netherlands and more! Take a look at our map to find out more about what's happening:


View Crisis Talks in a larger map

Sunday, 6 November 2011

Walking for water in Uganda

Looking for some inspiration for planning your event for the World Walks for Water and Sanitation 2012?

Here's a short clip of Doreen from UWASNET telling us about the World Walks for Water 2011 in Uganda!



Saturday, 5 November 2011

Join our World Walks for Water and Sanitation campaign!


Today is a very exciting day for us as we launch our new campaign around World Water Day 2012 - the World Walks for Water and Sanitation! Join thousands of people across the globe who will be walking from 17 to 25 March 2012 to demand that their politicians take action to put an end to the water and sanitation crisis.

Earlier this year, over 350,000 people walked in 75 different countries during the World Walks for Water campaign. They made their voices heard ahead of the Fourth United Nations Conference on the Least Developed Countries and this directly resulted in strong and ambitious water and sanitation targets being included in the Istanbul Programme of Action. And there were great national successes too! Following the campaign, Nepal’s sanitation budget was tripled and Germany took decisive action by agreeing to join the Sanitation and Water for All partnership.


World Walks for Water 2011 in Liberia

But there is still more to be done! And this year, we hope the World Walks for Water and Sanitation will mobilise even more people in even more countries and show governments across the world that we won't stand for women walking 40 billion hours per year carrying water weighing 18 kg which is still not even safe to drink.

This year, the timing of the World Walks for Water and Sanitation is hugely important. It comes almost exactly a month before world leaders gather in Washington at the second High-Level Meeting of the Sanitation and Water for All partnership to discuss what they are going to do to tackle the water and sanitation crisis. With this mass global campaign, we can show them that the world expects decisive action and will not stand for 4000 children dying each day simply because they don't have clean water and a toilet. It is really important that your Development or Finance Minister attends this meeting and comes ready to act – and you can take the opportunity of your ‘Walk’ to invite them to attend and demand that they commit to increasing provision to get water and sanitation to the world’s poorest communities.

So, we're asking as many people as possible to join together and walk! Whether you are part of an NGO, university, school or company, you can get involved by organising your own walk or joining one that is already taking place. Walks can be of any length and can take place anywhere! Have fun and get as much attention as you can by singing, dancing, dressing as taps and toilets or inviting celebrities along too. You can walk to your politicians' offices to deliver a petition or invitation to the High-Level Meeting, or ask them to go a step further and walk alongside you - how you do it is up to you but remember that it's about political action and making sure we apply pressure on the decision makers.

If you are interested in getting involved and organising a walk, take a look at our exciting new campaign toolkit for everything you need to get started. It's full of ideas and tips to help you make your walk a success! And once you have done that, why not register your walk on the website so that we can tell everyone about your event and encourage them to join you.

Together, we can make sure that the World Walks for Water and Sanitation shows decision makers around the globe that it's time to act.