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Promoting solar water disinfection in schools: experiences and lessons learnt in Latin America

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conference contribution
posted on 2018-02-12, 15:09 authored by M Schute, Elsa Sanchez, Matthias Saladin, Regula Meierhofer
Assessments of WASH promotion programmes showed that it is difficult to produce sustainable habit changes at community level. Teaching of children and transferring the message from school to the community is a promising approach to increase impact and sustainability. The Fundación SODIS implemented projects promoting household water treatment, with a special focus on solar water disinfection, and improved hygiene in more than 1,000 schools in Latin America, training more than 8'000 teachers and 170'000 Students. The experiences made during these projects showed that children do assimilate new behaviour faster and better than adults and that they can function as triggers for behaviour change and consolidation of new habits in the community. The most important factor to support assimilation was the ritual combination of elements to a complex behaviour pattern. Implementation of SODIS in small, rural schools was very successful, while promotion in big urban schools encountered difficulties.



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SCHUTE, M. ... et al, 2011. Promoting solar water disinfection in schools: experiences and lessons learnt in Latin America. IN: Shaw, R.J. (ed). The future of water, sanitation and hygiene in low-income countries - Innovation, adaptation and engagement in a changing world: Proceedings of the 35th WEDC International Conference, Loughborough, UK, 6-8 July 2011, 4p.p.


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