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Community-led total sanitation: triggering sustainable development in Zambia

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conference contribution
posted on 12.02.2018, 15:09 by Peter Harvey, Leonard Mukosha
Community Led Total Sanitation (CLTS) was introduced in Choma district in Zambia in late 2007. In twelve months sanitation coverage has increased from 38% to 93% across 517 villages, 402 of which are open defecation free. Over 14,500 toilets have been constructed by households with zero hardware subsidy and approximately 90,000 people have gained access to sanitation in less than a year. It is estimated that 88% of toilets met the Government’s definition of ‘adequate’ sanitation and 76% had handwashing facilities. If the approach is expanded to the remaining 300 villages in the district it is almost certain that the MDG sanitation target will be surpassed at district level more than five years ahead of time. The approach has accelerated access to sanitation far faster than subsidized sanitation approaches of the past and has enabled communities to recognize that they can develop without ‘handouts’; this has led to community led initiatives in other areas of development.



  • Architecture, Building and Civil Engineering

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  • Water, Engineering and Development Centre (WEDC)

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HARVEY, P. and MUKOSHA, L., 2009. Community-led total sanitation: triggering sustainable development in Zambia. IN: Shaw, R.J. (ed). Water, sanitation and hygiene - Sustainable development and multisectoral approaches: Proceedings of the 34th WEDC International Conference, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, 18-22 May 2009, 4p.p.


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