Alternative Sanitation in Protracted Emergencies
Grant awarded: £191,446
Lead organisation: National Foundation for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
Partnering organisations: Oxfam UK; UNHCR
Project length: 2014-2016
Study locations: Ethiopia
Principal Investigator: Thomas Handzel, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
The overall objective of this project is to determine the safety and acceptability of Urine-Diversion Toilets (UDTs) in a large field setting in order to offer guidance on their use in humanitarian crises. Poor management of human waste can lead to the spread of potentially deadly diseases such as cholera, which can spread particularly quickly in cramped, temporary settings such as refugee camps. UDTs could be an effective solution in difficult environments where pit latrines are impractical.
The findings of the research will help UNHCR and other agencies determine whether UDTs, as currently designed, are an appropriate intervention in this type of setting. It will make recommendations on how to improve their effectiveness, and produce findings and guidelines that will help to scale up installations of UDTs in the future. Greater use of UDTs could help improve sustainability and health outcomes in the longer term in humanitarian crises.