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Shedding light on humanitarian sanitation

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conference contribution
posted on 2018-08-20, 10:14 authored by Brian Reed, Rachel Hastie, Jeanne Vidal, Andy Bastable, Kerry A. Akers, Julie Lafreniere
Lighting should be provided for WASH facilities in Humanitarian contexts according to several standards. Evidence for this and the practical budget, operational and management responsibilities are less clear. A three-country research project looking at the impact of lighting on WASH use and Gender- Based Violence (GBV) required a multi-disciplinary approach, combining OXFAM’s practical implementing expertise with WEDC’s research-orientated approach. The research showed how much more is needed for safe sanitation than just building latrines. Lack of usage of latrines had implications for environmental health. A reason for not using latrines was due to fear of many things, including GBV. The location of the facility was a common concern, but simple lessons are not easy to distil as the context varies between settlements and changes rapidly overtime. The provision of lighting was welcomed by a wide range of stakeholders, but other factors still affect both GBV and WASH outcomes.


The authors would like to thank the Humanitarian Innovation Fund for funding this research.



  • Architecture, Building and Civil Engineering

Research Unit

  • Water, Engineering and Development Centre (WEDC)

Published in

41st WEDC International Conference


REED, B. ... et al, 2018. Shedding light on humanitarian sanitation. IN: Shaw, R.J. (ed). Transformation towards sustainable and resilient WASH services: Proceedings of the 41st WEDC International Conference, Nakuru, Kenya, 9-13 July 2018, Paper 3073, 7pp.


© WEDC, Loughborough University


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Egerton University, Nakuru, Kenya

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