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Water & Sanitation

Gender Mainstreaming and Water Development Projects: Analyzing Unexpected Enviro-Social Impacts in Bolivia, India, and Lesotho

Citation:

Cairns, Maryann R., Cassandra L. Workman, and Indrakshi Tandon. 2017. "Gender Mainstreaming and Water Development Projects: Analyzing Unexpected Enviro-Social Impacts in Bolivia, India, and Lesotho." Gender, Place & Culture 24 (3): 325-42.

Authors: Maryann R. Cairns, Cassandra L. Workman, Indrakshi Tandon

Abstract:

ENGLISH ABSTRACT:
Gender mainstreaming policies and programs, meant to be gender-sensitive or to target gender issues, are increasingly implemented by both governmental and non-governmental actors. However, these projects seem set to continually aim solely at women, despite more than a decade of work encouraging broader scope. Using recent case studies from Bolivia, Lesotho, and India, we address the tensions laden in three major questions about water, gender, and development: (1) Is mandatory inclusion of women in water governance and decision-making effective?, (2) Do water development projects provide equal benefits and burdens for women and men?, and (3) In what ways are water projects and their policies impacting and impacted by gendered enviro-social spaces? By providing triangulated data from ethnographic studies in three distinct local contexts, we are able to pinpoint major cross-cutting themes that serve to highlight and interrogate the gendered impacts of water development projects’ policies: public and private lives, women’s labor expectations, and managing participation. We find that gender mainstreaming endeavors continue to fall short in their aim to equitably include women in their programming and that geographic, environmental, and socio-cultural spaces are intimately related to how these equitability issues play out. We provide practical recommendations on how to address these issues.
 
SPANISH ABSTRACT:
Las políticas y programas de transversalización de género, diseñadas para ser sensibles al género o con objetivos en temas relacionados con éste, se implementan cada vez más tanto por actores gubernamentales como no gubernamentales. Sin embargo, estos proyectos parecen programados para apuntar únicamente y en forma continua a las mujeres, a pesar de más de una década de trabajo alentando un abordaje más abarcativo. Utilizando estudios de caso recientes de Bolivia, Lesoto e India, analizamos las tensiones generadas en tres cuestiones principales acerca del agua, el género y el desarrollo: 1) ¿Es efectiva la obligatoriedad de la incorporación de las mujeres en la gobernanza y la toma de decisiones sobre el agua?, 2) ¿Los proyectos de desarrollo hídrico brindan los mismos beneficios y cargas a las mujeres que a los hombres?, y 3) ¿De qué maneras los proyectos de agua y sus políticas están impactando en los espacios socioambientales generizados, y de qué manera están siendo impactados por éstos? Ofreciendo datos triangulados de estudios etnográficos en tres contextos locales distintos, pudimos identificar importantes temas transversales que sirven para destacar e interrogar los impactos generizados de las políticas de los proyectos de desarrollo hídrico: las vidas públicas y privadas, las expectativas laborales de las mujeres y la administración de la participación. Encontramos que los esfuerzos en pos de una transversalización del género continúan teniendo sus límites en su intento por incluir de forma equitativa a las mujeres en su programación y que los espacios geográficos, ambientales y socioculturales están íntimamente relacionados con la forma en que se desarrollan estos temas de equidad. Brindamos recomendaciones prácticas sobre cómo abordar estos problemas.
 
CHINESE ABSTRACT:
理应对性别敏感或聚焦性别议题的性别主流化政策与方案,正逐渐由政府与非政府行动者实行。尽管十多年来不断鼓励扩大性别主流化的工作范畴,但这些方案似乎持续仅针对女性。我们运用玻利维亚,莱索托与印度的晚近案例研究,应对有关水,性别与发展的三大问题中充满的紧张关系:(1)强制将女性纳入水资源管理与决策是否有效?(2)水资源发展计画是否对男性与女性产生相同的效益与负担?以及(3)水资源计画及其政策以什麽方式影响性别化的环境—社会空间并受其影响?透过提供三个特殊地方脉络的民族志研究的三角交叉数据,我们得以精确定位强调并探问水资源发展计画方案的性别化冲击的主要交错议题:公共与私人生活,女性的劳动期待,以及经营参与。我们发现,性别主流化的努力,持续无法达到公平地将女性纳入计画的目标,而地理、环境和社会文化空间,与这些平等议题如何展开紧密相关。我们对如何应对上述问题提出务实的建议。

Keywords: women, water supply, equity and inclusion, NGOs, development, Mujeres, provisión de agua, equidad e inclusión, ONG, desarrollo, 女性, 水资源供给, 平等与包容, 非政府组织, 发展

Topics: Development, Environment, Gender, Women, Gender Mainstreaming, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Equity, Governance, Infrastructure, Water & Sanitation, Livelihoods, NGOs Regions: Africa, Southern Africa, Americas, South America, Asia, South Asia Countries: Bolivia, India, Lesotho

Year: 2017

Recovering Bioenergy in Sub-Saharan Africa: Gender Dimensions, Lessons and Challenges

Citation:

Njenga, Mary, and Ruth Mendum, eds. 2018. Recovering Bioenergy in Sub-Saharan Africa: Gender Dimensions, Lessons and Challenges. Colombo, Sri Lanka: International Water Management Institute.

Authors: Mary Njenga, Ruth Mendum

Abstract:

There is a strong link between gender and energy in view of food preparation and the acquisition of fuel, especially in rural areas. This is demonstrated in a range of case studies from East and West Africa, where biochar, human waste and other waste resources have been used to produce briquettes or biogas as additional high-quality fuel sources. The synthesis of the cases concludes that resource recovery and reuse for energy offers an alternative to conventional centralized grid projects which, while attractive to investors and large-scale enterprises, do not necessarily provide job opportunities for marginalized communities. Reusing locally available waste materials for energy production and as soil ameliorant (in the case of biochar) in small enterprises allows women and youth who lack business capital to begin modest, locally viable businesses. The case studies offer concrete examples of small-scale solutions to energy poverty that can make a significant difference to the lives of women and their communities.

Annotation:

Table of Contents:
1. Gender and Energy and the Rationale for Resource Recovery and Reuse (RRR) for Energy

Ruth Mendum and Mary Njenga

2. Human Waste-to-fuel Briquettes as a Sanitation and Energy Solution for Refugee Camps and Informal Urban Settlements
Tyler Karahalios, Catherine Berner and Mary Njenga

3. The Impact of Gendered Roles in the Briquette Production and Supply Chain: Lessons Learned from Green Heat Ltd, Uganda
Gabriel Okello, Vianney Tumwesige, Ronald Angura, Daphne Nasige, Dorothy Kyomugisha and Mary Njenga

4. Adoption and Economic Impact of Briquettes as Cooking Fuel: The Case of Women Fish Smokers in Ghana
Solomie Gebrezgabher, Sena Amewu and Mary Njenga

5. Biogas as a Smart Investment for Women’s Empowerment and Livelihood Enhancement
Judith Libaisi and Mary Njenga

6. An Assessment of the Business Environment for Waste-to-energy Enterprises and How it Affects Women Entrepreneurs in Kenya
Solomie Gebrezgabher, Avinandan Taron, Jack Odero and Mary Njenga

7. Gender and Improvement of Cooking Systems with Biochar-producing Gasifier Stoves
James K. Gitau, Ruth Mendum and Mary Njenga

8. Women in Energy: Perspectives on Engaging Women Across the Energy Value Chain: The Case of wPOWER
Ruchi Soni, Wanjira Mathai, Linda Davis and Mary Njenga

9. Gender as Key in Community Participation
Megan Romania, Mary Njenga and Ruth Mendum

10. Challenges and Solutions for Gender Mainstreaming and Gender Integration in Research and Development
Ruth Mendum, Ana Maria Paez and Mary Njenga

11. Take-home Messages on Gender and Resource Recovery and Reuse (RRR) for Energy
Ruth Mendum and Mary Njenga

Topics: Age, Youth, Displacement & Migration, Refugee/IDP Camps, Gender, Gender Mainstreaming, Households, Infrastructure, Energy, Water & Sanitation, Livelihoods Regions: Africa, East Africa, West Africa Countries: Ghana, Kenya, Uganda

Year: 2018

Gender Specific Perspectives among Smallholder Farm Households on Water-Energy-Food Security Nexus Issues in Ethiopia

Citation:

Villamor, Grace B., Dawit Guta, Utkur Djanibekov, and Alisher Mirzabaev. 2018. “Gender Specific Perspectives among Smallholder Farm Households on Water-Energy-Food Security Nexus Issues in Ethiopia.” ZEF-Discussion Papers on Development Policy No. 258, Zentrum für Entwicklungsforschung / Center for Development Research (ZEF), University of Bonn.

Authors: Grace B. Villamor, Dawit Guta, Utkur Djanibekov, Alisher Mirzabaev

Abstract:

The water-energy-food security nexus concept is a widely recognized analytical approach to consider and achieve sustainable development goals. However, the water-energy-food security nexus concept has mostly been analyzed at higher scales in a top-down manner, while examples of bottom-up and local scale applications remain limited. Breaching this gap, the research presented in this paper describes and assesses the water-energy-food nexus from a smallholder farm household perspective in the context of rural Ethiopia through a gender-specific lens. We adopted the “Actors, Resources, Dynamics and Interactions” participatory approach to co-develop a mental model of this nexus concept. Using this approach, we were able to examine the key elements and interlinkages among major nexus related resources that affect management according to gender. The results indicate that there are four aspects that differentiate between male and female farm household management with respect to the water-energy-food nexus. These differences include gender specific productive roles, perceptions of target resources, access to external actors, and decision making with respect to target resource management and utilization, which may affect the dynamics and governance of important components of the water-energy-food nexus.

Keywords: ARDI method, bottom-up approach, energy-food-land linkages, gender roles, intrahousehold heterogeneity, mental model

Topics: Agriculture, Gender, Gender Roles, Governance, Households, Infrastructure, Energy, Water & Sanitation, Livelihoods, Security, Food Security, Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) Regions: Africa, East Africa Countries: Ethiopia

Year: 2018

Eco-Sufficiency and Global Justice: Women Write Political Ecology

Citation:

Salleh, Ariel, ed. 2009. Eco-Sufficiency and Global Justice: Women Write Political Ecology. New York: Pluto Press.

Author: Ariel Salleh, ed.

Annotation:

Summary:
As the twenty-first century faces a crisis of democracy and sustainability, this book brings women academics and alternative globalisation activists into conversation.
 
Through studies of global neoliberalism, ecological debt, climate change, and the ongoing devaluation of reproductive and subsistence labour, these uncompromising essays by women thinkers expose the limits of current scholarship in political economy, ecological economics, and sustainability science. (Summary from Pluto Books)
 

Table of Contents:
1. The Devaluation of Women’s Labour
Silvia Federici

2. Who is the ‘He’ of He Who Decides in Economic Discourse?
Ewa Charkiewicz

3. The Diversity Matrix: Relationship and Complexity
Susan Hawthorne

4. Development for Some is Violence for Others
Nalini Nayak

5. Nuclearised Bodies and Militarised Space
Zohl de Ishtar

6. Women and Deliberative Water Management
Andrea Moraes and Ellie Perkins

7. Mainstreaming Trade and Millennium Development Goals?
Gig Francisco and Peggy Antrobus

8. Policy and the Measure of Woman
Marilyn Waring

9. Feminist Ecological Economics in Theory and Practice
Sabine U. O’Hara

10. Who Pays for Kyoto Protocol? Selling Oxygen and Selling Sex
Ana Isla

11. How Global Warming is Gendered
Meike Spitzner

12. Women and the Abuja Declaration for Energy Sovereignty
Leigh Brownhill and Terisa E. Turner

13. Ecofeminist Political Economy and the Politics of Money
Mary Mellor

14. Saving Women: Saving the Commons
Leo Podlashuc

15. From Eco-Sufficiency to Global Justice
Ariel Salleh

Topics: Development, Environment, Climate Change, Feminisms, Ecofeminism, Feminist Political Ecology, Feminist Political Economy, Globalization, Infrastructure, Energy, Water & Sanitation, Livelihoods, Sexual livelihoods

Year: 2009

A Political Ecology of Women, Water and Global Environmental Change

Citation:

Buechler, Stephanie, and Anne-Marie S. Hanson, eds. 2015. A Political Ecology of Women, Water and Global Environmental Change. New York: Routledge.

Authors: Stephanie Buechler, ed. , Anne-Marie S. Hanson, ed.

Annotation:

Summary:
This edited volume explores how a feminist political ecology framework can bring fresh insights to the study of rural and urban livelihoods dependent on vulnerable rivers, lakes, watersheds, wetlands and coastal environments. Bringing together political ecologists and feminist scholars from multiple disciplines, the book develops solution-oriented advances to theory, policy and planning to tackle the complexity of these global environmental changes. Using applied research on the contemporary management of groundwater, springs, rivers, lakes, watersheds and coastal wetlands in Central and South Asia, Northern, Central and Southern Africa, and South and North America, the authors draw on a variety of methodological perspectives and new theoretical approaches to demonstrate the importance of considering multiple layers of social difference as produced by and central to the effective governance and local management of water resources. This unique collection employs a unifying feminist political ecology framework that emphasizes the ways that gender interacts with other social and geographical locations of water resource users. In doing so, the book further questions the normative gender discourses that underlie policies and practices surrounding rural and urban water management and climate change, water pollution, large-scale development and dams, water for crop and livestock production and processing, resource knowledge and expertise, and critical livelihood studies. This book will be of interest to students and scholars of environmental studies, development studies, feminist and environmental geography, anthropology, sociology, environmental philosophy, public policy, planning, media studies, Latin American and other area studies, as well as women’s and gender studies. (Summary from Routledge)
 
Table of Contents: 
1. Introduction: Towards a Feminist Political Ecology of Women, Global Change and Vulnerable Waterscapes

Anne-Marie Hanson and Stephanie Buechler

2. Interrogating Large-Scale Development and Inequality in Lesotho: Bridging Feminist Political Ecology, Intersectionality and Environmental Justice Frameworks
Yvonne Braun

3. The Silent (and Gendered) Violence: Understanding Water Access in Mining Areas
Kuntala Lahiri-Dutt

4. Urban Water Visibility in Los Angeles: Legibility and Access for All
Kathleen Kambic

5. Advances and Setbacks in Women’s Participation in Water Management in Brazil
Andrea Moraes

6. Climate-Water Challenges and Gendered Adaptation Strategies in Rayon, a Riparian Community in Sonora, Mexico
Stephanie Buechler

7. International Partnerships of Women for Sustainable Watershed Governance in Times of Climate Change
Patricia E. (Ellie) Perkins and Patricia Figuieredo Walker

8. Women’s Contributions to Climate Change Adaptation in Egypt’s Mubarak Resettlement Scheme through Cactus Cultivation and Adjusted Irrigation
Dina Najjar

9. Shoes in the Seaweed and Bottles on the Beach: Global Garbage and Women’s Oral Histories of Socio-Environmental Change in Coastal Yucatán
Anne-Marie Hanson

10. Heen Kas’ el’ti Zoo: Among the Ragged Lakes – Storytelling and Collaborative Water Research with Carcoss/Tagish First Nation (Yukon Territory, Canada)
Eleanor Hayman with Mark Wedge and Colleen James

11. Pamiri Women and the Melting Glaciers of Tajikistan: A Visual Knowledge Exchange for Improved Environmental Governance
Citt Williams and Ivan Golovnev

12. Conclusion: Advancing Disciplinary Scholarship on Gender, Water and Environmental Change through Feminist Political Ecology
Stephanie Buechler, Anne-Marie Hanson, Diana Liverman and Miriam Gay-Antaki

Topics: Agriculture, Environment, Climate Change, Feminisms, Feminist Political Ecology, Gender, Women, Infrastructure, Water & Sanitation, Intersectionality, Livelihoods Regions: Africa, MENA, Central Africa, North Africa, Southern Africa, Americas, North America, South America, Asia, Central Asia, Middle East, South Asia Countries: Brazil, Canada, Egypt, Lesotho, Mexico

Year: 2015

When Wetlands Dry: Feminist Political Ecology Study on Peat Ecosystem Degradation in South and Central Kalimantan

Citation:

Indirastuti, Catharina, and Andi Misbahul Pratiwi. 2019. “When Wetlands Dry: Feminist Political Ecology Study on Peat Ecosystem Degradation in South and Central Kalimantan.” Jurnal Perempuan 24 (4): 335-49.

Authors: Catharine Indirastuti, Andi Misbahul

Abstract:

INDONESIAN ABSTRACT: 

Indonesia memiliki 47 persen lahan gambut tropis dari total lahan gambut dunia. Namun sayangnya tata kelola lahan gambut yang berkelanjutan belum banyak diterapkan dalam pemanfaatan lahan gambut, alih-alih menjadi rumah bagi keanekaragaman hayati, lahan gambut di Indonesia justru berakhir kering, terbakar, dan beralih menjadi perkebunan monokultur. Persoalan degradasi ekosistem gambut adalah akibat dari politik tata kelola lingkungan yang tidak berkelanjutan--yang menyejarah. Penelitian ini memperlihatkan kompleksitas politik tata kelola kawasan gambut dan dampaknya terhadap perempuan dengan lensa ekologi politik feminis. Penelitian ini dilakukan di beberapa desa di Kalimantan Tengah dan Selatan, kawasan gambut tropis terbesar di Indonesia. Penelitian ini menemukan bahwa 1) Ada persoalan salah tata kelola lahan gambut yang disadari perempuan desa baik secara praktis maupun politis; 2) perempuan dan anak perempuan mendapatkan dampak berlapis dari degradasi ekosistem gambut yakni, perempuan tercerabut dari ruang hidup, perempuan sulit mendapatkan sumber air dan pangan, perempuan mengambil alih peran kepala keluarga karena laki-laki bermigrasi namun tidak selalu diakui perannya sebagai kepala keluarga, dan perempuan dimiskinkan karena kehilangan kemandiriannya dan harus bekerja sebagai buruh sawit. Penelitian ini menggunakan kajian ekologi politik feminis sebagai alat analisis untuk melihat ketertindasan berlapis yang dialami perempuan pedesaan akibat degradasi ekosistem gambut. 

ENGLISH ABSTRACT: 
Indonesia tropical peatlands area is 47 percent of out of the total global peatlands. But unfortunately, sustainable peatland governance has not been widely applied in the management of peatlands, instead of being home to biodiversity, peatlands in Indonesia have ended up dry, burning and turned into monoculture plantations. The problem of peat ecosystem degradation is the result of unsustainable - historical environmental governance politics. This study shows the political complexity of peatland governance and its impact on women with a feminist political ecology lens. This research was conducted in several villages in Central and South Kalimantan, the largest tropical peat areas in Indonesia. This study found that 1) Rural women were realized that there are problems with peatland governance, both practically and politically; 2) women and girls have multiple impacts from peat ecosystem degradation ie, women are deprived of living space, women find it difficult to get water and food sources, women take over the role of the head of the family because men migrate but are not always recognized as the head of the family, and women are impoverished because they lose their independence and must work as oil palm workers. This study uses a feminist political ecology study as an analytical tool to see the multi-layered oppression experienced by rural women due to peat ecosystem degradation. 

Keywords: rural women, peatland village, peat ecosystem, feminist political ecology, resource governance, perempuan desa, desa gambut, ekosistem gambut, ekologi politik feminis, tata kelola sumber daya

Topics: Agriculture, Feminisms, Feminist Political Ecology, Extractive Industries, Gender, Women, Governance, Infrastructure, Water & Sanitation, Livelihoods, Security, Food Security Regions: Asia, Southeast Asia Countries: Indonesia

Year: 2019

Gardening Matters: a Political Ecology of Female Horticulturists, Commercialization, Water Access, and Food Security in Botswana

Citation:

Fehr, Rachel, and William G. Moseley. 2017. “Gardening Matters: a Political Ecology of Female Horticulturists, Commercialization, Water Access, and Food Security in Botswana.” African Geographical Review 38 (1): 67-80.

Authors: Rachel Fehr, William G. Moseley

Abstract:

The Government of Botswana and its partners have sought to address household food insecurity and poverty by experimenting with gardening initiatives of various sizes and commercial orientation. We use a multi-method approach, incorporating both econometric analysis and qualitative data, viewed through the theoretical lens of feminist political ecology, to determine how effective these women’s gardening initiatives are in addressing household food insecurity. We compare the relationship between commercial orientation and food security for women who rely on borehole water, tap water, and river water. We find that food security status improves with commercial orientation only when women are already experienced with the commercial market and/or when commercialization helps cover unavoidable water costs. When women have access to a reliable source of inexpensive water (as the river water users do), they can sustainably pursue subsistence-oriented horticulture and may in fact see greater food security benefits from consuming what they grow than from selling it. This study’s results call into question claims that commercialized horticulture will improve food security without first addressing the gendered dynamics of water access.

Keywords: commercial agriculture, feminist political ecology, food security, horticulture, water access, Botswana

Annotation:


 

Topics: Economies, Poverty, Feminisms, Feminist Political Ecology, Gender, Women, Infrastructure, Water & Sanitation, Livelihoods, Security, Food Security Regions: Africa, Southern Africa Countries: Botswana

Year: 2017

Water Worries: an Intersectional Feminist Political Ecology of Tourism and Water in Labuan Bajo, Indonesia

Citation:

Cole, Stroma. 2017. “Water Worries: an Intersectional Feminist Political Ecology of Tourism and Water in Labuan Bajo, Indonesia.” Annals of Tourism Research 67: 14-24.

Author: Stroma Cole

Abstract:

Framed in feminist political ecology, this paper presents an intersectional analysis of the gender-water-tourism nexus. Based in an emergent tourism destination, Labuan Bajo, Indonesia, it goes beyond an analysis of how women bear the brunt of burdens related to water scarcity, and examines which women and why and how it affects their daily lives. Based on ethnographic research and speaking to over 100 respondents, the analysis unpicks how patriarchal cultural norms, ethnicity, socio-economic status, life-stage and proximity to water sources are intertwined to (re)produce gendered power relations. While there is heterogeneity of lived experiences, in the most part tourism is out competing locals for access to water leading to women suffering in multiple ways.

Keywords: gender, water, Indonesia, intersectionality, patriarchy

Topics: Environment, Ethnicity, Feminisms, Feminist Political Ecology, Gender, Gendered Power Relations, Patriarchy, Infrastructure, Water & Sanitation, Intersectionality, Livelihoods Regions: Asia, Southeast Asia Countries: Indonesia

Year: 2017

‘Spaces of Exclusion’ in Community Water Governance: a Feminist Political Ecology of Gender and Participation in Malawi’s Urban Water User Associations

Citation:

Adams, Ellis Adjei, Luke Juran, and Idowu Ajibade. 2018. “‘Spaces of Exclusion’ in Community Water Governance: a Feminist Political Ecology of Gender and Participation in Malawi’s Urban Water User Associations.” Geoforum. doi: 10.1016/j.geoforum.2018.06.016

Authors: Ellis Adjei Adams, Luke Juran, Idowu Ajibade

Abstract:

Much of the literature on gender dimensions of community-based water governance focuses on irrigation systems in rural areas. Largely overlooked is how gender dynamics influence participation in community-based urban water governance systems. To address this gap, we use insights from Feminist Political Ecology (FPE) to examine whether and how community-based governance of drinking water in an urban context leads to (in) equitable gender participation and decision making. Using household surveys (n = 415), key informant interviews (n = 19), focus-group discussions (n = 14), we explore gender dynamics and power relations underpinning participation, decision making processes, and employment and benefit sharing arrangements among Water User Associations (WUAs) in the urban informal settlements of Lilongwe, Malawi. We find that WUAs do not guarantee equitable gender participation. Rather, inequitable participation is simply reified through: (1) gendered representation in WUA structures; (2) socio-cultural practices and women’s self-exclusion; and (3) community micro-politics and power relations. Our findings contradict the notion that community-based governance of water leads to equitable participation and empowerment of women. The policy implications are that without systematic efforts to incorporate women’s needs, interests, and voices, so-called participatory approaches to water governance will only serve to suppress women’s agency and reinforce existing gender-based inequalities. Future work will explore the pathways to women’s leadership in the WUAs and interrogate how women on the board and executive committees navigate their way up the hierarchy, their experiences in a male-dominated water governance scheme and their recommendations for how WUAs can improve women’s participation.

Keywords: feminist political ecology, water users associations, gender, participation, urban water governance, Malawi

Topics: Feminisms, Feminist Political Ecology, Gender, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Equity, Governance, Infrastructure, Water & Sanitation Regions: Africa, Southern Africa Countries: Malawi

Year: 2018

Delivering Water, Sanitation and Hygiene Interventions to Women and Children in Conflict Settings: A Systematic Review

Citation:

Als, Daina, Sarah Meteke, Marianne Stefopulos, Michelle F. Gaffey, Mahdis Kamali, Mariella Munyuzangabo, Shailja Shah, Reena P. Jain, Amruta Radhakrishnan, Fahad J. Siddiqui, Anushka Ataullahjan, and Zulfiqar A. Bhutta. 2020. "Delivering Water, Sanitation and Hygiene Interventions to Women and Children in Conflict Settings: A Systematic Review." BMJ Global Health 5 (Suppl 1).

Authors: Daina Als, Sarah Meteke, Marianne Stefopulos, Michelle F. Gaffey, Mahdis Kamali, Mariella Munyuzangabo, Shailja Shah, Reena P. Jain, Amruta Radhakrishnan, Fahad J. Siddiqui, Anushka Ataullahjan, Zulfiqar A. Bhutta

Abstract:

Background: Access to safe water and sanitation facilities and the adoption of effective hygiene practices are fundamental to reducing maternal and child morbidity and mortality globally. In armed conflict settings, inadequate water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) infrastructure poses major health risks for women and children. This review aimed to synthesise the existing information on WASH interventions being delivered to women and children in conflict settings in low-income and middle-income countries (LMICs) and to identify the personnel, sites and platforms being used to deliver such interventions. 
 
Methods: We conducted a systematic search for publications indexed in four databases, and grey literature was searched through the websites of humanitarian agencies and organisations. Eligible publications reported WASH interventions delivered to conflict-affected women or children. We extracted and synthesised information on intervention delivery characteristics, as well as barriers and facilitators. 
 
Results: We identified 58 eligible publications reporting on the delivery of WASH interventions, mostly in Sub-Saharan Africa. Non-Governmental Organization (NGO)/United Nations (UN) agency staff were reported to be involved in delivering interventions in 62% of publications, with the most commonly reported delivery site being community spaces (50%). Only one publication reported quantitative data on intervention effectiveness among women or children. 
 
Discussion: This review revealed gaps in the current evidence on WASH intervention delivery in conflict settings. Little information is available on the delivery of water treatment or environmental hygiene interventions, or about the sites and personnel used to deliver WASH interventions. Limited quantitative data on WASH intervention coverage or effectiveness with respect to women or children are important gaps, as multiple factors can affect how WASH services are accessed differently by women and men, and the hygiene needs of adolescent girls and boys differ; these factors must be taken into account when delivering interventions in conflict settings.

Keywords: hygiene, maternal health, public health, treatment, systematic review

Topics: Conflict, Gender, Women, Girls, Boys, Health, Infrastructure, Water & Sanitation, International Organizations, NGOs Regions: Africa

Year: 2020

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