The Cambodia Rural Sanitation and Hygiene Improvement Programme (CRSHIP) works to increase access to improved sanitation and promote good hygiene practices in rural communities. CRSHIP actively promotes sustainable latrine use and handwashing with soap, as well as safe water consumption, while strengthening government and partner capacities. The programme works in 10 provinces through local and international NGOs.
The programme began its second phase (CRSHIP 2) in 2015, expanding to five additional provinces and working with new and existing implementing partners, in collaboration with the Ministry of Rural Development and other sector partners.
Cumulative results reported from the start of the programme until December 2015 include over 518,000 people living in ODF environments and close to 430,000 with improved toilets. Since December 2014, these results have increased by 41 and 33 percent, respectively.
As part of its advocacy and communication activities, CRSHIP actively participated in national celebrations for World Water Day in Siem Reap Province, and a National Sanitation Day event in Kampot Province. Moreover, a CRSHIP inception workshop was held in Phnom Penh in October 2015 to communicate the programme’s revised strategy to stakeholders. The workshop involved new and existing implementation partners as well as representatives from the Ministry of Rural Development.
While the programme employs the CLTS approach to ensure inclusiveness in participation, helping to address the exclusion of marginalized groups, it is challenged by the presence of subsidy-led programmes operating in neighboring areas. To address this, the programme is supporting the Ministry of Rural Development to conduct an ‘inclusive WASH study’. This study will, together with other studies, assist the ministry in drafting a set of guiding principles on applying appropriate mechanisms and incentives to target the poorest and most vulnerable in rural areas.
Learning and innovation
In 2015, the CRSHIP team was trained in the Participatory Social Assessment and Mapping (PSAM) methodology. PSAM uses causal diagraming and systems thinking to help map and assess poverty, vulnerability, seasonality, and gender issues at the community level. A CRSHIP budget provision has been made to ensure full participation in all target villages.
Building on lessons from CRSHIP 1, research and experiences in the development field, the first GSF action learning grant has been set up in partnership with WaterAid. The grant builds on learning and knowledge management research and concepts applied to development work such as participatory action learning, positive deviance and complexity theory. The activities under this grant are designed to inform strategic implementation for CRSHIP 2 and support the rigorous documentation of knowledge and evidence. To achieve these goals, CRSHIP will use an ‘emergent learning’ approach, aimed at generating learning in real time by the network and for the network of implementing partners, helping to solve complex implementation problems as they occur. While its design is tailored to the specific needs of CRSHIP, the set of concepts used for the emergent learning approach could benefit any large-scale programme.
‘Three Behaviors in One Hour’ (3B1H) is another practice-based approach developed by CRSHIP. It builds on WASH sector learning in Cambodia in terms of behaviour change communication. It is a strategy focusing on three key WASH behaviors: using latrines consistently, handwashing with soap at critical times, and drinking safe water. 3B1H documentation, including an assessment report and six-step guide for implementation, has been shared with partners and is available upon request.
In 2016, CRSHIP will continue delivering its second phase, ensuring all Sub-grantees have begun implementation and training has been provided on PSAM, real-time learning and documentation, CLTS, and hygiene promotion. CRSHIP will also continue to institutionalize ‘pause and reflect’ sessions to review lessons learned and adapt implementation strategies accordingly.
When WASH practitioners understand the patterns and causes of slippage, they can devise innovative strategies to avoid it.
Global Sanitation Fund programmes are designed to incorporate gender considerations and equity dimensions.
Monitoring slippage should go beyond the numbers to truly understand behaviour change and community dynamics.