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Group Washing Facilities: an efficient way to fight against bad sanitation

GIZ and UNICEF published a collection of exemplary designs for group handwashing facilities in schools entitled “Scaling up Group Handwashing in Schools: Compendium of Group Washing Facilities across the Globe.” The catalogue supports schools communities to engage in daily group handwashing activities by showing different practical examples for constructing group washing facilities. The publication will inspire schools communities to determine an appropriate design suitable to their own demands and resources.

Handwashing with soap has been recognized as the most simple and effective way to prevent infectious diseases. However, this will only be realized if done habitually and regularly especially at critical times, such as after using the toilet and before handling food or eating. Making handwashing a life-long habit among school-age children requires them to practice handwashing at critical times on a daily basis in schools. Consequently, these hygiene behaviors can be practiced school-wide with adequate, functioning and well-maintained group washing facilities in schools.

The importance of group handwashing has been recognized in the joint UNICEF-GIZ Three Star Approach Field Guide to WASH in Schools. Focusing on usable, cost-efficient and adequate infrastructure, the application of this stepwise concept to improving WASH conditions in schools is gaining momentum worldwide.

As a landmark publication, the facility compendium introduces the topic and do-ability of group handwashing in schools, and presents key principles to be considered in planning, constructing and maintaining group washing facilities. The publication features different designs for group handwashing facilities – from basic, yet functional and would allow schools to start implementing group handwashing easily to the more sophisticated designs.

Key features of each design are also highlighted such as their structural design, level of difficulty regarding construction, operation and maintenance (O&M), usability aspects, rough expenditures for material and labour costs, advantages and limitations. Technical drawings and the Bill of Quantities (BoQ) presenting details on the materials used and costs. The publication showcases examples from Afghanistan, Cambodia, Fiji, India, Indonesia, Kiribati, Lao PDR, Liberia, Mali, Nigeria, Philippines, Tanzania and Zambia.


Download the report here.