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Our purpose is clear: to empower the humanitarian community to improve humanitarian response. We make this happen by supporting and championing the outcomes of robust research and proven innovations.
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What humanitarian need is being addressed?

Time constraints and pressure to deliver ‘hardware’ in humanitarian contexts often means that WASH actors make use of ‘standard’ emergency designs, or make assumptions about the needs of those affected.

By putting the emphasis on preferences, cultural norms, practices and beliefs that women and girls have around menstruation, blood and personal hygiene, the project will pilot the use of rapid assessment tools and design private, safe and inclusive WASH facilities for bathing, laundering and disposing of menstrual materials in humanitarian settings which can be adapted to other different contexts.

What is the innovative solution and how will it improve existing humanitarian practice?

Currently, there is a lack of evidence-based tools and guidance for rapidly designing MHM and disability-friendly WASH facilities in humanitarian contexts. This project seeks to address this gap, by consulting in a participatory approach with women and girls, piloting new rapid engagement tools for designing inclusive and accessible WASH facilities in a participatory way, and by developing and piloting technical designs that can be adapted to other different contexts.

The minimum standard checklists that will be piloted are simple and easy-to-use, and can be used across the emergency phases. For example, they can be used by engineers and hygiene promotion specialist during assessment to guide the design of facilities based on input from women and girls and with disabilities (e.g. use of card board models to encourage women and girls to visualize the different solutions), for ongoing monitoring (e.g. are facilities being used (why/why not?), which adaptations are needed?).

What are the expected outcomes?

There are three main expected outcomes:

  • Minimum standard checklists for MHM and disability friendly communal latrines and bathing/laundering areas, which have been piloted and tested in Lebanon.
  • Technical designs including construction details, for MHM and disability friendly communal latrine and bathing/laundering area, which can be adapted to other contexts.
  • Recommendations for MHM and disability friendly WASH emergency response equipment which can be pre-positioned for rapid deployment in crises, with key items included in the Red Cross Red Crescent Emergency Item Catalogue.
Before and after site improvement from past IFRC MHM projects, Photo Credit: IFRC
IFRC project testing site, Photo Credit: IFRC

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