you may not agree with our classification of brac wash program in our platform for climate exchanges between smart villages
water water everywhere and not a drop to drink - this could have been written about bangladesh from the 1970 killer cyclone that caused abed to go from oil company ceo to bottom up disaster relief- to the tragedy that western ngos spent decades building drinking water wells only to find that in most of banglsadesh undeground water is contaminated by arsenic - of course villages without electricity grids or landline phones dont have running water
in terms of sanitation brac introduced pit latrines at the earliest
as this IRC report shows brac wash became a newly coordinated cross functional effort in 2006 https://www.ircwash.org/sites/default/files/brac_wash_programme_final_report_2006-2015_0.pdf
here is brac's main current link to wash and list of current partners -and of course wash your hands is essential to fighting covid assuming you can access clean water
below is abed's foreword to Wash 2006-15
Poverty is not a natural state of affairs. However, the underlying causes of this dehumanising system can be challenged only when poor people have the tools to make changes. That is why social and economic empowerment, health and education are central to every area of BRAC's work. From its earliest days, BRAC championed clean water and hygienic sanitation as essential elements in the journey out of poverty. In the 1980s, BRAC went door to door teaching mothers to make oral rehydration solution to reduce the tragic losses through infant and child deaths. During the 1990s, safe water and latrines were identified by the Government of Bangladesh and BRAC as one of the critical health areas. By this time, 97% of the population had access to free drinking water through shallow tubewells but, as we all know, the discovery of arsenic in the groundwater of large areas of the country set back these gains. The BRAC Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) programme makes a critical contribution to reversing this. The programme has reached out across 250 sub-districts – about half the country – and has helped over 39 million people gain access to hygienic latrines and 2.3 million people gain access to safe water. Outcome monitoring shows impressive gains not only in access, but also in use rates of hygienic latrines. Targeted sanitation financing – loans for the poor, grants for the ultra poor – along with motivation for self-financing for the non poor, has ensured equal access for all wealth categories. The programme has also supported more than 5,500 secondary schools (around a quarter of all secondary schools in the country) to build separate latrines for girls with menstrual hygiene management facilities. These achievements have been made possible through community empowerment and by enlisting the support of significant forces in society including local government, educational institutions, health volunteers, religious leaders, and other stakeholders. However, the greatest contribution has been made by the frontline field staff and the village WASH committees that the programme helped to establish. Become effective, efficient, then scale up. That is the approach adopted in all BRAC’s programmes. The WASH programme has showed policy makers and planners in South Asia and elsewhere that such an approach can help every rural household have a hygienic latrine and good sanitation practices. The success of the BRAC WASH programme is celebrated, but we must not lose our sense of urgency in the face of so much unmet need. Currently, the national improved water coverage is 87% and the improved sanitation coverage is 61%, according to the WHO and UNICEF. There are still rural communities without clean water supply options due to arsenic and other contaminants such as iron and manganese. There are coastal areas where saline water has infiltrated the traditional ponds and groundwater supplies. There are many urban areas with inadequate water and sanitation; and safely managing increasing volumes of human waste is an emerging challenge for health. Menstrual hygiene management, especially by adolescent girls, is an issue that has still to be properly addressed. To continue the work of BRAC WASH at scale with less money is a challenge we will rise to meet. We will work with national and local government, with the private sector and with community structures to extend our work into new areas. We remain aware that the real heroes are the poor themselves, especially the women in the family who will continue to be agents of change in our development efforts. The donors and partners who helped to launch and support the BRAC WASH programme are to be congratulated on their ambition and willingness to build partnerships. I should also like to thank the Government of Bangladesh for its willingness to let BRAC work alongside them. It is now time to share our effective and proven approach along with our learning. This report will help to raise the global profile of our collective work in this area so that a model that has been shown to be efficient and cost-effective can be implemented more widely both within Bangladesh and throughout the region.
Sir Fazle Hasan Abed KCMG
we desperately hope artificial intelligence water will bring deep enough maps to take water community to a next level and indeed water will become a schools curriculum however much diverse editing (learning by teachers) that requires - 15 years ago lula helped with a lot of work on bon aqua but brazil of the 2000s as epicentre of world social forum hasnt evidently been an sdg benchmark in 2010s
there are not that many bottom up knowledge hubs of water - singapore's world toilet might be vaut le voyage; the aiib and world bank offered indonesia a billion dollar loan to end slums- we await news of whether water was a successful component of that; it is said that india has just earmarked a billion dollars solely for better toilets- again we await; and as you probably know: as global warming accelerates bangladesh will increasingly get drowned out- its a country where suddenly nature's provion of too much water can ruin all the good water; pretty much every community needs its own resiliency plan..
on IRC netherlands
From knowledge broker to international think-and-do-tank: we've evolved a lot over the last 50 years. IRC was founded in 1968 under an agreement between the World Health Organization and the Government of the Netherlands as a hub for information dissemination, a 'knowledge broker'. We were the focal point of a world-wide network of collaborating institutions active in water supply research and development.
During the 1980s and 90s our work became more focused on finding solutions that work through action research. We started to test and adapt innovative approaches to tackle complex problems. This work has taught us the value of taking a systems approach - involving everyone from the people on the ground, to the people who hold the purse strings. That's why now, we champion and enable the vital change from short-term interventions to building resilient local and national WASH systems.
Today, we're working with governments, NGOs, entrepreneurs and people around the world. Together we find and implement long-term solutions to make access to safe water and sanitation available for everyone, for good.