As many villages and districts of Bihar, India are now declaring themselves as ODF. Many other States across India are also verifying the same as per their respective mechanisms. The achievement of ODF involves to a great extent work of behavior change, sustenance of which requires concerted efforts by the community. Since 2017 Reach India Trust with support from UNICEF had been skillfully able to intervene across 10 districts of Bihar (2 districts namely Gaya, Nalanda in the first two phases) and Begusarai, Khagaria, East Champaran, West Champaran, Kaimur, Banka, Purnea and Supaul in the third phase to help DWSC in the preparation of block level ODF and SBCC plan. Block level plan has been generated in consultation with the concern officials and stakeholders and fed back into the system through regular review meeting with BDOs and District Magistrate in all 10 districts. Team has been working to capacitate the block officials/staff/frontline workers to effectively implement the ODF campaign.

All the 8 Districts in the third phase have been engaged with skilled Swachhagrahis to perform community triggering process to introduce desired behavior change with precision. The Nigrani Samiti (Vigilance Committee) is being strengthened to vigil the open defecation in their respective areas. All the trained Swachhagrahis has been closely monitoring the activities of the Nigrani Samiti (Vigilance Committee) through a prescribed format. The Block and District team has also been monitoring the activities under community approaches through a monitoring sheet on daily basis. All the key stakeholders and frontline workers of the intervening districts have been sensitized to play an active role in the District ODF campaign. Innovative communication tools are being designed to help mobilize the communities and the entire army of stakeholders on making their District Open Defecation Free within the shortest time possible.

In the 4th phase of the project Reach India have intervened in 5 ODF declared districts of Bihar namely Banka, Sheikhpura, Sitamarhi, Gaya, and Purnea to help the District Water and Sanitation committee to help in the preparation of block level ODF sustainability through regular use of Toilet and solid waste management. School hygiene has been added to in this part because it has been an unquestioned ‘essential element’ of water and sanitation.

Facts & Figures

UNICEF has been supporting Reach India Trust since 2017 to implement a project on Open defecation free in Bihar. This is the fourth phase of the project (June 2019 to December 2019) in which we have focused on Solid waste management, Wise water managements, soak pit construction, retrofitting issues and toilet coverage in schools and community. Reach has intervened across 69 panchayats of 5 blocks of 5 aspirational districts in Bihar. It is an action research model that also helps different stakeholders to learn and make ODF sustainable.  As a part of the action research a survey had been aligned in the project during the month of June’19 in Schools and community, to gain an insight on the toilet coverage and usage of the toilet in the community, retrofitting issues, the current behavior of the HH regarding the 4 aspects- personal hygiene, safe storage and handling of water, hand washing with soap and usage of toilet and last but not the least to know the status of Solid Waste Management and current procedures for disposing the waste in the community and schools so that strategies could  be developed and implemented to make ODF sustainable.  Based on the results of the survey strategies were adopted in the next six months to mitigate the exiting problems related to proper WASH practices.

map

5 aspirational Districts were taken up for the study, 1 block from each district. 2 surveys were conducted –Household and schools.

5679 Households and 286 schools of the baseline were surveyed in the End line.

The list of districts where the survey was conducted is marked in the given map of Bihar. The report has been prepared based on the recommendations and suggestions of UNICEF during the baseline survey.

Major findings of school survey

  1. 77% growth has been observed in the availability of the pad banks in schools i.e. from 16 schools in the baseline, the end line come up 159 schools.
  2. 37% of the surveyed populations those who use to throw waste in the open space now have stopped doing that practice as a part of the waste disposal mechanism. A considerable number of Household i.e. 1993 HH out of 5679 HH i.e. 35% of the HH as started composting as a part of waste disposal mechanism at the HH level.
  3. Out of 185 schools, in 176 schools (95%) schools soap banks have been installed.
  4. Unavailability of the lock from inside was one of the minor retrofitting issues in about 9% schools; it was observed that about 5% schools have sorted that issue.
  5. About 10% schools have made arrangement of proper ventilation in the school toilets compare to the baseline.
  6. It has been observed that 55% of school reported that students are washing their hands before mid day meal
  1. About 21% more schools have installed dustbins in the school toilets, motivated by SLTS activities.
  2. About 48% more schools have installed dustbins in the school premise motivated by SLTS activities.
  3. From the baseline survey, it was found that 42 (26%) schools, adolescent girls avoid coming to schools during menstruation and in the End line it was assessed that it came down to 11 (8%) schools. Due to the establishment of pad banks and awareness generation about menstrual hygiene practices the rate of absenteeism of the adolescent girls in the school was decreased to 31%.

Major findings of Community survey

  1. Increase the toilet coverage by 19 percentage points and decrease the retrofitting issues by 9 percentage point.
  2. In the baseline the total number of retrofitting issues was 2/ household but in the end line the number decreased to 1/ household on an average.
  3. Reach India team’s intervention the single pits have been converted to double leach pit. The team have been able to develop the mindset of the community people not only to construct toilets but also with appropriate toilet technology.
  4. 17% of the total HH having toilet and children are disposing child feces in drains or open spaces and 83% of the community people who have toilets in their HH and child, dispose child feces in the toilets.
  5. 37% more population from the surveyed population are now using soap as handwashing materials and on the other hand 23% per of those category of the population who earlier were using soil to clean their have are not use soil currently.
  6. During the community level interactions focus has been given on waste management both dry and wet waste. Through specially designed IEC materials, the teams have been able to make people understand that all type of waste have some financial values. The wet waste can be managed at the HH by converting it to compost and dry waste generated at the HH could be send for re-use or recycling and it can be sold in the market. 34% HH’s have started composting as wet waste management and about 64% of the HH’s started selling dry waste generated at the HH to the Kabadiwala (scrap sellers) or dry waste collector.
  7. The concept of soak pit construction and Kitchen gardening was adapted by very few in the community but in the end line it was observed that for disposal of waste water, 1043 soak pits have been constructed for Gray water management and few people have also initiated kitchen gardening at their HH.

SCHOOL

school

The effect of BCC and SLTS can be seen from the availability pad bank established in schools in the end line studies. A 77% growth has been observed in the availability of the pad banks in schools i.e. from 16 schools in the baseline to 159 schools in the end line.”

handwash

The comparative analysis of the baseline and end line states that compare to the baseline 20 (11%) more schools have now handwashing basins in the school campus and 28 (15%) more schools have availability of soap with the wash basins through BCC and SLT

grey

Out of 185 schools about 61% of the schools have constructed soak pits, and we can also state that 43% more schools are now draining the gray water in the soak pit, compared to the base line

COMMUNITY

CHILD FEACES

About 48 percentage point growth have been observed in the category of HH having children and toilets who are throwing child feces in the toilet.

COMPARATIVE

It can be implied from the above comparative analysis that the collective efforts of the team have been able to increase the toilet coverage by 19 percentage points and decrease the retrofitting issues by 9 percentage point. Therefore it can be concluded that the coordinated effort of the team on increasing coverage and decrease retrofitting issues have raised the toilet usage by 9 percentage points.

COMPARATIVE

After Reach India teams intervention the single pits have been converted to double leach pit. 8 bio-digesters were found in Sitamarhi Riga Block and 1 in Banka block

DISPOSING

During the baseline it was found that the waste water generated from the HH are either discarded in the open spaces (69%) and in drains (20%). The concept of soak pit construction and Kitchen gardening was adapted by very few in the community but in the end line it can be seen that for disposal of waste water, 1043 soak pits have been constructed for Gray water management.

WASTE

37% of the surveyed populations those who use to throw waste in the open space now have stopped doing that practice as a part of the waste disposal mechanism. A considerable number of Household i.e. 1993 HH out of 5679 HH i.e. 35% of the HH as started composting as a part of waste disposal mechanism at the HH level.