School Sanitation and Hygiene Education in India 2004

Country Paper Series “School sanitation and hygiene education in India: Investment in building children’s future” has been published by Ministry of Rural Development, Department of Drinking Water Supply for SSHE Global Symposium “Construction is Not Enough” Delft, The Netherlands 8-10 June, 2004, the books were developed in the context of the School Water and Sanitation Towards Health and Hygiene (SWASTHH) programme in India.

The country paper – Investment in Building Children’s Future, is an attempt to capture the learning’s from various parts of the country and experiences of partners. This has also helped to shape policy and traces the evolution, goals and achievements of the SSHE program highlighting in particular the Indian approach.

The books were developed in the context of the School Water and Sanitation Towards Health and Hygiene (SWASTHH) programme in India, they provide many useful guidelines and activities that apply to similar programmes elsewhere and examines key features of SSHE such as behavioural change, education and training, approach, strategic planning, mode of implementation, district planning, local mobilisation, technologies, and ongoing school/community activities.

According to study at present, SSHE programme is running in about 400 districts with an objective of providing sanitation facilities in 0.35 million schools with financial outlay of approximately US$ 1,500 million.

Current form of SSHE under TSC has incorporated many of the innovations and best practices from SWASTHH project especially in terms of health and hygiene activities using life-skill approach, operation and maintenance, school based monitoring, etc. It also reveals the innovation in implementation of SSHE successful experience of partnerships particularly with United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and International Resource Center (IRC, Netherlands) in schools in Alwar district in Rajasthan.

To conclude, the impact of the programme which is now much more comprehensive and integrated to promote the children’s right to a healthy and clean environment, effective learning, and enrollment of particular girls, reduce diseases and worm infestation, and outreach to families and communities and recognizes the key areas needs to strength and priority given to software rests on the assumption that children are important agents of change for shaping attitude and mindset on sanitation and hygiene. In the essence, the programme recognizes the significant of children as an investment in the present and future for lasting social change, for a healthy and clean society and looks upon them as entry points for initiating change for cleaner environment and their own protection.

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