Paint It Blue for World Water Day 2018

Join CAWST and Paint it Blue for our annual World Water Day event on Wednesday, March 21 at TELUS Spark from 5 – 7.30 pm.

Join CAWST and Paint it Blue for our annual World Water Day event on Wednesday, March 21 at TELUS Spark from 5 – 7.30 pm, a showcase of environmental leadership by Youth Wavemakers. The event has many interactive booths, activities and inspiring speakers, from partners like Green Calgary, City of Calgary, Alberta Tomorrow and Alberta Water Portal. Take action for a thirsty planet and Paint it Blue!

More details and RSVP here.

 

Urban Thrift World Water Day Clothing Drive Support (Multiple Positions)

CAWST is looking for individuals interested in helping with the Urban Thrift World Water Day clothing drive on March 23 and 24.

Urban Thrift + CAWST Clothing Drive Volunteer

CAWST’s annual World Water Day campaign, Paint It Blue, inspires many individuals and businesses to take action on global and local water issues. This year, our partner, Urban Thrift, is hosting a Paint It Blue clothing drive, where 100% of the proceeds will be donated to CAWST. To support them in doing this, we are offering our time to support and serve the customers that come in.

Volunteers are crucial to the success of our Paint it Blue campaign. CAWST is looking for individuals interested in helping with the Urban Thrift World Water Day clothing drive on March 23 and 24.

Duties and Responsibilities:

  • Greet customers and take clothing that they are donating
  • Share knowledge of CAWST
  • Hand out Paint it Blue buttons

Shifts Available: 

Saturday, March 24: 10 am – 1 pm
Saturday, March 24: 12 – 3 pm
Saturday, March 24: 2 – 5 pm
Saturday, March 24: 4 – 8 pm
Sunday, March 25: 10 am – 1 pm
Sunday, March 25: 12 – 3 pm
Sunday, March 25: 2 – 6 pm

Location: Urban Thrift – 3434 34 Ave NE, Calgary, AB, T1Y6X3

Skills and Qualifications:

  • Outgoing and engaging
  • Knowledge about CAWST, the international WASH sector, and/or international development issues

Department and Supervision: Public Engagement and Donor Initiatives

Application:

If you are already a CAWST volunteer, and you wish to apply for this volunteer position, please contact the Volunteer Program Coordinator, Tori D’Avella, at volunteers@cawst.org or 403-243-3285 ext 259, or simply sign up to a shift here. If you are new to CAWST, please complete the volunteer sign up form.

Additional comments:

All CAWST volunteers are invited to participate in a 4-day training workshop of their choice after completion of 40 volunteer hours. Volunteers are also invited to join in our annual Volunteer appreciation night. CAWST welcomes volunteers searching for work experience, and is happy to provide letters of reference to interested volunteers.

CAWST in the News: ACGC’s 2018 Top 30 Under 30

For her work towards achieving SDG 6 in her community in Zambia, Tikho Lungu, who stars in CAWST’s Youth Wavemakers teaching resources, was recognized by the Alberta Council for Global Cooperation (ACGC) among the 2018 Top 30 Under 30 youth.

Tikho Lungu, ACGC 2018 Top 30 Under 30
Tikho Lungu, ACGC’s 2018 Top 30 Under 30.

CALGARY, February 2, 2018 – Every year, to coincide with International Development Week, the Alberta Council for Global Cooperation (ACGC) publishes the stories of amazing young people from Alberta, as well as those working with their member organizations abroad, who are making this world a better place for everyone.  CAWST is a member of ACGC, and this year, Innocencia Tikho Lungu, who stars in the Youth Wavemakers’ teaching resource, Tikho’s Storyhas been recognized among the ACGC’s Top 30 Under 30.

Learn more about Tikho’s extraordinary work in her community, collaborating with Seeds of Hope International partnerships (SoHIP), CAWST’s WET Centre in Zambia, towards achieving Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 6, ensuring access to water and sanitation for all.

From the Top 30 Under 30 Magazine:

When I was eleven, SoHIP visited our school with a water, sanitation, and hygiene awareness (WASH) program sponsored by CAWST where we created a group action plan for the school and it was successfully implemented. The program triggered my interest when I realized how badly we were affected by sanitation issues. I became motivated to take measures that would help change our community, so from then on, I started sharing what I learned with other kids my age. All this is possible because I am an action-oriented girl who is inspired to take little steps.

CAWST is delighted to congratulate Tikho on her well-deserved recognition. We look forward to working with ACGC and our fellow members to support extraordinary leaders like Tikho at our WET Centre in Zambia, and other local centers of WASH expertise worldwide. Working together, we are taking steps -both big and little ones- to achieve the Global Agenda.


Read more about the ACGC’s Top 30 Under 30 youth here.

Banner image: CAWST. Tikho (middle) with her family; Zambia, 2017.

Marketing & Communications Advisor

Are you a master of marketing and communications and passionate about International Development? CAWST is not like other organizations, and this position is not like others. Neither are you. You are a self-starter who is excited about engaging the public in CAWST and our cause. You are drawn to this position because you want to make a difference in the world, and your marketing and communications skills are directly transferable to this role.

Are you a master of marketing and communications, and passionate about International Development? CAWST is not like other organizations, and this position is not like others. Neither are you. You are a self-starter who is excited about engaging the public in CAWST and our cause. You are drawn to this position because you want to make a difference in the world, and your marketing and communications skills are directly transferable to this role.

The exciting, fast-paced Marketing & Communications Advisor position at CAWST is crucial to increasing our organization’s profile in North America and making CAWST a household name in Canada.

The Position: Marketing & Communications Advisor

Reports to: Director, Public Engagement & Donor Initiatives

Type: Full time, permanent

Position start date: As soon as possible

 

Position Summary

The Marketing & Communications Advisor is part of CAWST’s Public Engagement & Donor Initiatives department. This position is responsible for educating and motivating the public to take action for safe water and sanitation in developing countries, and for mobilizing the public to support CAWST.

The Public Engagement & Donor Initiatives team works closely with all CAWST departments and, in particular, our International Partnerships team which is responsible for CAWST’s profile and fund development in the international development, water and sanitation, and health sectors.

Specific Areas of Responsibility

  1. Public Engagement in North America
  • Develop and deliver the marketing and communications strategy and oversee its implementation – including campaigns, events, digital marketing, and public relations
  • Develop and maintain a high public profile for CAWST as an innovative, competent Canadian organization making a significant impact on world poverty
  • Lead the development and execution of strategies for targeting, communicating with and engaging individuals and organizations who will be most receptive to CAWST’s vision and mission, such as:
    • CAWST members in North America
    • Philanthropic individuals and companies
    • Community groups:  service clubs, church groups, youth groups and schools, immigrant communities
    • Volunteers
    • Professional associations
  • Coordinate with CAWST’s International Partnerships team to:
    • Implement and refine CAWST’s brand strategy
    • Leverage, maximize, and ensure consistency and clarity across the Canadian public and international sector communications, including technical and non-technical content
  • Work closely with the CEO, Directors and staff, supporting them to deliver on their objectives by providing appropriate tools, materials and presentations
  • Develop and manage communication content (e.g., stories, videos, blogs, infographics), tools (e.g., website, brochures), and channels (e.g., traditional and social media)
  • Conduct the final writing and editing of communications materials
  • Expand CAWST’s traditional and social media presence, adapting to a fast-changing communications environment
  • Coordinate CAWST events and speaking engagements in Canada
  • Provide leadership and direction for the public engagement and graphics teams on day-to-day marketing activities
  • Maintain high standards of accuracy and respectful, positive portrayal in communications
  • Stay up to date on competitive environment and consumer trends, identify gaps and opportunities to engage North American audiences, and pitch ideas to the leadership team
  • Interface with supporters and the public, increasing CAWST’s credibility
    • Develop and maintain strong insight into key water and sanitation issues, CAWST’s model and approach, and our work with clients
    • Deliver presentations on water and sanitation to promote CAWST’s approach, garner support and develop new business relationships

 

  1. Donor Initiatives
  • Support CAWST’s philanthropy initiatives to attract and steward relationships with CAWST’s donors and publicly recognize their contributions to CAWST
  • Work closely with CEO, Director Public Engagement & Donor Initiatives, and fund development staff to grow our revenue stream from individuals and organizations supportive of CAWST’s vision and mission
  • Activate and monitor third party fundraising initiatives for suitability in terms of financial return and alignment with CAWST’s values and reputation

 

  1. Youth Wavemakers
  • Develop and manage the marketing and communications of CAWST’s Youth Wavemakers program to engage and empower youth to take action on global and local water and sanitation issues
  • Leverage this program, its alumni and parents of youth for CAWST’s public engagement initiatives

 

4. Volunteers

  • Recruit and manage skilled volunteers and contractors as needed to support CAWST’s public engagement and fundraising

 

  1. Governance
  • Participate in the development and execution of CAWST’s strategic plans, operation plans and budgets
  • Support CAWST policies and implement procedures

 

  1. Management
  • Provide input on management performance indicators as related to this department
  • Develop the marketing and communications capability of the CAWST team: ensure our people, processes and systems are able to successfully execute on our plans, evolve, and adapt to growth
  • Coach Public Engagement and Donor Initiative staff as required
  • Work with external agencies on refining our messaging, executing our campaign, and media buying
  • Contribute to a professional and high performance work environment
  • Any other duties and responsibilities assigned by the Director of Public Engagement and Donor Initiatives

 

Expectations

  • Achieve targets set out in the annual operations plan
  • Provide clear direction in terms of targeted audiences, progression of engagement and services required based on sound analysis of internal results and external scans
  • Propose and execute realistic strategies and tactics, considering the human and financial resource limitations
  • Effective and efficient delivery of activities listed above
  • Increase engagement level of CAWST members
  • Make CAWST increasingly well known across Canada
  • Contribute to our target of 33% of CAWST budget funded by individuals
  • Competency, commitment, and teamwork 

 

The person

Education and experience

Bachelor’s degree in a related discipline; knowledge of water and sanitation and/or international development is desirable. Proficiency in written and spoken French is an asset.

 

Experience

Minimum ten years’ work experience in:

  • Marketing and communications in a corporate or agency environment
  • Business and/or fund development
  • Multi-cultural environments is an asset
  • Experience in international development or water and sanitation is an asset

 

Skills & Attributes / Qualifications

Understand our cause: Develop and maintain strong insight into the global water challenge and solutions, CAWST’s model and approach, and the importance of building local capacity. This understanding is key to designing the right messaging and strategies to engage a broader public audience to support our cause.

Committed and passionate: A deep conviction of our cause and CAWST’s approach –what CAWST does and how we do it—  as well as  charisma and enthusiasm to engage and motivate the public, are essential to succeeding on this team.

Entrepreneurial and creative thinker: Our public engagement needs to stand out and amplify CAWST’s brand. We examine the tried and true, make new and different connections, and are prepared to take risks and try new ideas.

Adept at navigating a fast-changing communications environment: Success in CAWST’s public engagement and fundraising relies on agile strategies that adapt to the changing marketing and communications environment, staying focused on what works while making quick assessments and avoiding distraction of every new opportunity.

Professional and credible: Represent CAWST in the public sphere and in the fundraising realm in a manner that is consistent CAWST’s vision, mission, values, and professional reputation.

A collaborative approach:all our public engagement activities are executed with input from various roles, in coordination with other teams. You embrace a collaborative approach.

 

Compensation

Will be discussed in personal interview. Please include salary expectations in your cover letter.

 

To Apply

Please send your cover letter, resume, and questionnaire answers (see below) to cawstHR@cawst.org.  The position will be open until filled. No phone calls please. Only those candidates able to work in Canada will be reviewed; and only those granted an interview will be contacted.

CAWST values equitable opportunities, sustainable solutions and collaborative and inclusive processes. We recognize and accept differences in cultural, religious and political processes.

Questionnaire

Please answer all questions to the best of your ability. Be as specific as possible and try to keep each answer under half a page.

  1. What has motivated you to consider this position? Please be specific to the responsibilities of the job.
  2. What is your philosophy on international development? Please support with an example from your own experience.
  3. How do you navigate the fast-changing marketing and communications environment? Please support with specific examples from personal experience.
  4. What are your long-term career goals and aspirations? Where do you see yourself in five years?

Organizational Background

CAWST is a Canadian charity that focuses on the principle that safe water and basic sanitation are fundamentals necessary to empower the world’s poorest people and break the cycle of poverty. CAWST transfers knowledge and skills to organizations and individuals in low- and middle-income countries through education, training, and consulting services. Since 2001, CAWST’s global client network, including governments, community-based charitable organizations, local enterprises, international development agencies, and educational institutions, has helped 15.4 million people get better water or sanitation.

The Financial Post named CAWST one of the Top 23 Charities in Canada in 2017. Read the article.

 

Context for this Job Posting

In support of our Vision and Mission, CAWST is increasing awareness of our cause and CAWST within Canada.

We have successfully increased our profile internationally and plan to do so at home as well. In this way, we can secure the broad base of support needed to help millions more people get safe drinking water. This saves lives and improves health, gives the ability to learn and go to school, and to earn a living and be contributing members of society.

In 2018, we are embarking on a multi-year public engagement and fundraising initiative to create a step-change in awareness and engagement in CAWST and our cause. We will be engaging external agencies to support us with particular aspects of the initiative, with the goal of building our internal capability. This initiative’s success will be measured by the increase in number of CAWST members, volunteers, donors and total dollars donated.

Our revenue strategy is focused on developing diversity across the following funder segments: individuals, community groups, companies, governments, foundations, inter-governmental agencies, and clients. CAWST distributes responsibility across various departments, with the Public Engagement and Donor Initiatives department directly responsible for individuals, community groups, and Canadian companies.

CAWST views our public engagement and fundraising as a long-term, ongoing activity that needs to be adaptive to fast-changing communication tools and channels. We have strong in-house capability and are further building it to successfully take our public engagement and fundraising to a new level.

Achieving SDG 6: The Need for Local Centres of WASH Expertise and How to Do It

CAWST and the SMART Centre Group have come together to share the key lessons learned in our combined 22 years of experience following a capacity development model of establishing and supporting local centres of WASH expertise.

Smart Centre Group

The goal: ensure availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all by 2030. The task at hand, right now: learn quickly from failure and share lessons learned.

Scaling-up of WASH service coverage will require a focus on both affordable infrastructure and enabling environments. CAWST and the SMART Centre Group are focused on both through capacity development of local providers of WASH products and services. As part of this work, both groups have been following the model of establishing and supporting local centres of WASH expertise. Each centre is unique, housed in an existing in-country organization and provides capacity development services on technical and non-technical WASH solutions and approaches. Between us, we have a combined 22 years of testing this approach. We can unequivocally say that it is a key part of achieving SDG 6, and we have come together to share our key lessons learned:

Lesson 1:  Local WASH centres are worth the long-term investment

  • Long-term follow-up support after training is vital to effective capacity development of an individual, especially in the case of entrepreneurs, who often encounter business challenges.
  • Locally embedded centres can reach people that an external organization cannot: Grounded networks, know-how, and understanding of the context are invaluable and not replicable. Ingrained local organisations are a rich source of knowledge about endogenous best, second best, and worst practices.

CAWST’s Water Expertise and Training (WET) Centre in Afghanistan, housed in the Danish Committee for Aid to Afghan Refugees (DACAAR), was the first WET Centre to become functionally and financially independent, due to high demand for capacity development in the country and an inability of external organizations to supply much of that demand. From 2011-2015, over 1 million community members benefitted from WASH projects implemented by the centre’s 1,378 clients.

 

Lesson 2:  Create enough critical mass and identify leaders at various levels

  • The commitment of the centre’s personnel is critical, yet challenging. Especially in the context of informal systems in developing countries where personnel turnover is high, developing the capacity of many to ensure enough critical mass of expertise over time is important.
  • Look for the entrepreneurial spirits and provide long-term coaching. Sustained business is essential: entrepreneurs need to sell their products and services profitably, so they will continue even if the centre ceases to exist.

More than a decade ago, the Southern Highlands Participatory Organisation (SHIPO) started accelerating access to WASH products and services by working relentlessly on capacity development and coaching of the private sector. There are now more than 40 small local companies who have produced over 3,000 wells, 11,000 rope hand pumps, and other SMARTechs throughout the country. SHIPO was the first WASH Centre of expertise within the SMART Centre Group. Key to its success has been its focus on market-based technologies and the promotion of (supported) self-supply (household wells).

 

Lesson 3:  The host organization must meet certain quality standards

  • The local host organization leadership’s commitment to the vision is critical.
  • Look for champions within the host organization – someone with the passion and network to make change happen, situated within an enabling environment (or with the ability to create an enabling environment). A champion must be able to effect change within institutional or structural limitations.
  • A base level of organizational capacity is necessary to develop technical and training capacity.

CAWST’s WET Centre in Zambia, housed in the Seeds of Hope International Partnerships organization, has adopted the model of training existing networks of community sales agents in WASH topics to increase implementation of a range of healthy home products while earning an income.

 

Lesson 4:  Flexibility is key

  • All stakeholders must share the willingness and ability to be flexible: A WASH centre needs to have an innovative, entrepreneurial spirit. Centres need to be able to adapt to sector needs and trends.
  • Innovation and capacity development – not only in technology, but also in marketing and other business skills – is essential. A centre needs to pursue various channels to generate income, like selling training and consulting support and implementing projects.

In Tanzania, VETA (The Vocational Education and Training Authority) has included the rope pump in its curriculum based on the cooperation they have with the SHIPO SMART Centre. They are also planning to add manual drilling in the near future.

 

Lesson 5:  Engage with local networks

  • If the centre is represented and active in relevant networks, it will increase legitimacy and business opportunities. Be innovative in how you integrate the centre into these networks– seek to add value and establish a fundamental niche service.
  • Being part of an international network such as WET Centres and SMART Centres increases knowledge exchange, learning from each other and innovation.
  • Linkages to the formal education sector, vocational training, and employment standards (e.g. job profiles) should be made where possible. To support scale-up and sustainability of impact it is critical to get the knowledge and expertise embedded in national (vocational) training curricula.

 

Locally embedded knowledge and skills as well as pursuing innovative and affordable approaches such as training local private sector actors are essential to reach water and sanitation related development goals. CAWST and the SMART Centre Group will continue to apply these lessons and spread practice in the sector around establishing local education and training centres.


About the authors

The SMART Centre Group is a network of endogenous WASH training centres in Tanzania, Malawi, Mozambique and Zambia, with additional centres starting up in Ethiopia, South Sudan, Niger and Nicaragua. SMART stands for Simple, Market-based, Affordable and Repairable Technologies. SMART Centres train technicians in production and maintenance of SMARTechs and coach entrepreneurs in business skills like marketing so that they can deliver WASH products and services to a range of customers.

CAWST is a Canadian charity and licensed engineering firm that acts as a global centre of expertise in WASH capacity development. CAWST addresses the global need for safe drinking water and sanitation by developing local knowledge and skills on simple, affordable solutions that people can implement themselves. To reach more people and to ensure that knowledge and skills are truly retained locally, CAWST partners with existing in-country organizations to create Water Expertise and Training (WET) Centres that deliver CAWST-like capacity development services of their own. Independently of CAWST, the seven WET Centres across 3 continents have provided services to 658 client organizations whose projects have reached 3.7 million people with better water or sanitation.

CAWST in the News: CAWST Co-Founder David Manz Hailed Among Most Compelling Calgarians

Dr. David Manz, inventor of the biosand filter, who co-founded CAWST in 2001, was named one of our city’s most compelling Calgarians by the Calgary Herald.

Dr. David Manz, CAWST co-founder and inventor of the biosand filter.
Dr. David Manz, CAWST co-founder and inventor of the biosand filter.

CALGARY, January 3, 2018 – Every year, the Calgary Herald shines a spotlight on 20 individuals who are making their mark on our city. This year, they have recognized Dr. David Manz, co-founder of CAWST and inventor of the biosand filter, as one of Calgary’s 20 Compelling Calgarians for 2018!

Get to know the Calgary Herald’s 20 Compelling Calgarians for 2018, and read the article about Dr. Manz.

From the Calgary Herald article:

Manz modified traditional slow-sand filters, making them smaller and more suitable for household use. In containers made of concrete or plastic, layers of prepared sand and gravel remove pathogens and suspended solids from contaminated drinking water. (…) [He] co-founded the Centre for Affordable Water and Sanitation Technology (CAWST) in 2001, donating his technology and associated training programs.

CAWST is delighted to congratulate Dr. Manz on this well-deserved recognition. Dr. Manz’s biosand filter invention, as well as his vision and generosity, have been integral to bringing safe, clean water to millions of people around the world.


Learn more about the biosand filter here and at manzwaterinfo.ca.

Banner image: CAWST. Biosand filters; Nepal, 2016.

CAWST Recognizes David P. O’Brien, OC as an Exemplary Canadian

2017 marked the 50th anniversary of the Order of Canada, one of our highest civilian honors to recognize outstanding achievement and service to the nation. CAWST’s Chairman of the Board of Directors, David P. O’Brien, OC is an Officer of the Order of Canada and we recognize his achievements and contributions in honor of the 50th anniversary.

2017 was a big year for Canada. In addition to our 150th anniversary of confederation, 2017 marked the 50th anniversary of the Order of Canada, one of our highest civilian honors. The Order of Canada recognizes outstanding achievement, dedication to the community and service to the nation.

David P. O’Brien, OC, Chairman of CAWST’s Board of Directors, eminent Canadian businessman and philanthropist, was named an Officer of the Order of Canada in 2008 “for his contributions as a respected corporate leader, and his support for post-secondary education across Canada.” Mr. O’Brien has made a tremendous contribution in Canada and internationally.


Kisii County, Kenya. August 30, 2017. David O’Brien during a visit to Kisii County, Kenya.

Mr. O’Brien is recognized for his leadership as CEO of Canadian Pacific Limited, where he partitioned it into five public companies and moved the head office to Calgary. Mr. O’Brien also negotiated the merger of PanCanadian Energy Corporation and Alberta Energy Company to create Encana Corporation.

Perhaps lesser known is that Mr. O’Brien, along with his wife, Gail O’Brien, are equally eminent philanthropists and become deeply involved with the causes they support. CAWST finds itself in remarkable company with the likes of the National Arts Centre, Sick Kids Hospital, Centre for Addiction & Mental Health, and universities including University of Calgary, McGill, and Concordia.

Mr. O’Brien treats philanthropy like a business investment, but with a social impact on investment. He only invests in organizations that are “efficiently run, address issues that truly matter and are poised to be significant players,” says Mr. O’Brien.

Mr. O’Brien started investing in CAWST in 2004, calling the organization a “little engine that could.” A “small but mighty” organization, Mr. O’Brien cites leverage and sustainability as key to CAWST’s success. To date, he has invested over $25 million in CAWST, enabling it to expand its reach from two to 194 countries and to an impact of 15.4 million people with better water or sanitation.

His involvement in CAWST is as an engaged Chairman of CAWST’s Board of Directors. He takes it upon himself to understand the water and sanitation sector and strategic organizational decisions.

In 2017, Mr. O’Brien travelled with Shauna Curry, CEO, and Tal Woolsey, International Technical Advisor, to four countries in East Africa to see CAWST’s impact and challenges first-hand. The two things that stand out most for Mr. O’Brien from visiting local communities are “the logistical challenges in developing countries and the leverage of investing in local organizations.”

CAWST acknowledges and thanks Mr. O’Brien for his contributions to Canada.

Behaviour Change (Basics) in 5 Minutes

Why is it hard to stick to our New Year’s resolutions? Because whether in WASH or in other matters, behaviour change is hard. Here are some basics on this fascinating topic, to support you in understanding, and then undertaking, behaviour change initiatives as part of your WASH programs.

Why is it hard to stick to our New Year’s resolutions? Because whether in WASH or in other matters, behaviour change is hard. Here are some basics on this fascinating topic to support you in understanding, and then undertaking, behaviour change initiatives as part of your WASH programs.

The importance of behaviours in WASH

The realisation of Sustainable Development Goal 6; “Ensure availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all”, requires focusing not only on understanding, developing, and increasing access to appropriate technologies, but also on incorporating behaviour change programming into water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH) interventions[i]. This focus on behaviour change is especially important for reducing the practice of open defecation, and increasing access and use of safely managed water (targets 6.1 and 6.2).

Many WASH initiatives have fallen short of having a lasting impact on improving people’s health and well-being because they failed to adequately address the behaviours that are required to adopt and meaningfully use a technology[ii]. With this in mind, conversations around behaviour change are increasing; numerous models explaining behaviour, with accompanying guides outlining their application in the development of an impactful behaviour change strategy, have been, and are continuing to be, developed.

Behaviour change strategies are programmes and activities designed with the intention to influence and change behaviour patterns[iii].

 

What is a behaviour?

Behaviour (sometimes also called practice) is the way we act in response to internal and external events. Behaviour can be broken down into the following three parts:

1. An observable action…
2. By a specific target audience…
3. Under specific conditions.[iv].

 

An example of a behaviour is:

After defecating in the household latrine, mothers of children under the age of five wash their hands with soap.
An example of a behaviour is: After defecating in the household latrine, mothers of children under the age of five wash their hands with soap.

Thinking outside the box when approaching behaviour change

Historically, typical behaviour change strategies in WASH have simply relied on providing information and increasing knowledge about the health risks associated with a behaviour[v]. However, as our understanding of behaviour change increases, we are beginning to realize that the reasons for our choice of behaviour are not always so straightforward, and initiating a change is not always easy to do. We are increasingly acknowledging that effective change campaigns should be informed by clear understandings of the factors that drive our choice of behaviours[vi].

As our understanding of behaviour change increases, we are beginning to realize that the reasons for our choice of behaviour are not always so straightforward, and initiating a change is not always easy to do.

Depending on which of the numerous models you use to conceptualize and explore a behaviour, it can be understood to be influenced by a whole range of interacting factors, including;

  • psychosocial determinants: like our perceptions of risk, attitudes towards a behaviour, perception of our ability to perform a behaviour etc.[vii];
  • a set of universal motives; for example, disgust, the desire to nurture, or attract mates[viii];
  • the context or behaviour setting, for example, norms and practices of others in the community or policies, laws, and elements of the enabling environment[ix];
  • the tools and infrastructure required to perform a behaviour; for example, handwashing behaviours may be influenced by the types of soap available, and the quality of the space to perform this behaviour;
  • and many, many more.

 

Learn more about behaviour change

Learn more about how behaviour can be understood using the Behaviour Centered Design approach (here), and the Risks, Attitudes, Norms, Abilities, and Self‐regulation (RANAS) model (here).

 

Coming up from CAWST

CAWST is currently undertaking some exciting projects around behaviour change.

  • A Behaviour Change Guide, which will introduce behaviour change theories and models relevant to the WASH sector, and will provide a practical guide for designing an effective behaviour change intervention, is currently under development.
  • We are also excited to be collaborating with Action Contre la Faim and The London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine on a project that explores determinants of handwashing behaviours and appropriate formative research methods that can be applied in humanitarian contexts. The full findings of this research, including practitioner resources, will be available in 2018. Read more about this project, which is made possible by the generous support of the American people through the United States Agency for International Development (USAID).
  • Finally, sanitation specific behaviours and demand creation strategies are being explored in our upcoming Sanitation Implementation workshop (currently under development).

Stay tuned for updates on these and more resources on this fascinating topic, to support you in to support you in understanding, and then undertaking behaviour change initiatives as a part of your WASH programs.

 

References

[i] United Nations, “Sustainable Development Goal 6,” Sustainable Development Knowledge Platform, accessed December 21, 2017, https://sustainabledevelopment.un.org/sdg6.

[ii] Susan Michie, Maartje M van Stralen, and Robert West, “The Behaviour Change Wheel: A New Method for Characterising and Designing Behaviour Change Interventions,” BioMed Central 6, no. 42 (2011).

[iii] Michie, M van Stralen, and West.

[iv] William Smith and John Strand, “Social Marketing Behavior: A Practical Resource for Social Change Professionals” (AED, 2008), www.drexel.edu/~/media/Files/greatworks/…/Social-Marketing-Behavior-Book.ashx.

[v] Hans-Joachim Mosler, “A Systematic Approach to Behaviour Change Interventions for the Water and Sanitation Sector in Developing Countries: A Conceptual Model, a Review, and a Guide,” International Journal of Environmental Health Research 22, no. 5 (January 31, 2012): 431–49, https://doi.org/10.1080/09603123.2011.650156.

[vi] Mosler.

[vii] Hans-Joachim Mosler et al., “How to Achieve Evidence-Based Behaviour Change,” Strategic Environmental Sanitation Planning 13 (2012).

[viii] Robert Aunger and Valerie Curtis, “Behaviour Centered Design: Towards an Applied Science of Behaviour Change,” August 18, 2016, https://doi.org/10.1080/17437199.2016.1219673.

[ix] Aunger and Curtis; Mosler et al., “How to Achieve Evidence-Based Behaviour Change.”


Kelly James is a Knowledge and Research Advisor on the Research & Learning team at CAWST. She holds a Master’s of Science degree in Public Health from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, and a Bachelor’s degree in Development Studies and Economics from the University of Calgary. Kelly is planning to stick to her New Year’s resolutions in 2018.

A Key Element to Achieving Optimal WASH Learning

A great lesson plan is essential to facilitate optimal learning experiences. Let’s walk you through some basic components of a lesson plan to help you deliver engaging and high-quality training in water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH).

A great lesson plan is essential to facilitate optimal learning experiences. Let’s walk you through some basic components of a lesson plan to help you deliver engaging and high-quality training in water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH).

Why use Lesson Plans?

There are many things to consider when you are preparing to deliver a lesson. For example:

  • How will you ensure that your learning outcomes are met?
  • How will you connect the content of the lesson to participants’ existing knowledge?
  • How will you make your lesson engaging and teach to different learning styles?
  • How will you give participants an opportunity to practice their new knowledge and skills?
  • How will you assess what the participants learned during the lesson?
  • How will you ensure that participants remember what you are teaching them?

A lesson plan is a tool that helps you respond to each of the questions above. When we create a lesson plan we take the time to carefully think through what and how we want participants to learn. This helps us to make the most of the time we have with participants and ensure that they are achieving the learning outcomes.

A great lesson plan helps us to facilitate optimal learning experiences and achieve the desired learning outcomes.

So how do you create one? This excerpt from our upcoming Trainer Essentials on Creating Effective WASH Training walks you through some basic components of a great lesson plan to help you deliver engaging and high-quality training in water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH).

4 Components of a Great Lesson Plan

Each component of a lesson is designed to meet the learner’s need for motivation, connection to existing knowledge, practice, and a safe learning environment. By thinking carefully through the flow of a lesson, delivering captivating introductions, participatory activities, and thorough reviews, you can support participants in achieving the learning outcomes.

1. Learning Outcomes

Learning outcomes define the purpose of a lesson. They are short statements describing the knowledge, skills, or attitudes that participants should acquire by the end of a lesson. The activities in the lesson should be designed to meet the learning outcomes. Each lesson plan should reference the overall learning expectations listed in the participant competencies.

Sharing the learning outcomes at the beginning of the lesson helps participants to understand what is expected of them and how they should focus their energy. Checking learning outcomes at the end of the lesson helps participants to assess how effectively they are meeting their learning goals (Boundless, 2016).

As trainers, having a clear understanding of the learning outcomes allows us to adjust a lesson plan to more effectively support the learners in reaching the outcomes. Assessing whether the learners have reached the outcomes helps us to gauge the effectiveness of the lesson.

2. Introduction


Participants may discard what we teach them if they consider it irrelevant or unimportant. We need to introduce topics in a way that is novel, engaging, and relevant to participants’ experience to stimulate their interest. The introduction is often called the hook or bridge because it grabs the attention of learners and entices them to learn more about the topic of the lesson. The introduction:
• Motivates participants to engage with the topic
• Connects the topic to participants’ existing knowledge and experience
• Helps participants to understand the learning outcomes of the lesson. (Froelich, 2009)

A short activity, story, question, reflection, or statement is used to capture learners’ attention and connect their previous knowledge to the topic of the lesson. During the introduction, the learning outcomes are also shared so that participants know what to expect and what to work toward during the rest of the session  (UBC, 2016).  The introduction is also an opportunity for us to assess what participants already know about a topic and learn more about their motivations. This information helps us to tailor the information delivered during the main activities in the lesson.

3. Activities


The deepest learning is achieved through participatory activities. These participatory activities are designed to build knowledge, skills, and attitudes. They are organized in a logical flow that builds upon participants’ existing knowledge. Information is delivered in small, manageable chunks. Time is provided for practice and assimilation of new content. The information is also delivered in a way that addresses each of the learning styles.

The activities in this section of the lesson include a mix of large group discussion, small group or partner work and discussion, and hands-on activities to promote active learning. By slowly building up the complexity of activities, participants gain the knowledge and confidence they need to be successful in learning. This is essential in maintaining a safe learning environment and continuing to motivate learners.

During the lesson, we have the opportunity to discover more about learners and to adjust activities according to their individual strengths, challenges, and interests. Not all participants will move through activities at the same pace. Similarly, some may be more interested in certain aspects of a subject than others. Activities need to be designed with enough flexibility that individual learners can explore things at a different pace and depth, while still providing continuity and a clear path for all participants.

4. Review

The review gives participants an opportunity to reflect on their learning and begin to practice communicating or applying their new knowledge and skills (Froelich, 2009). During the review, participants do a short activity to practice what they learned again. This helps to consolidate their newly acquired knowledge, skills, or attitudes.  The review is also a time to assess what participants have learned, if the learning outcomes were met, and if there are any gaps in participants’ understanding. It is important to remember that the review is not the place to introduce new ideas or concepts; it should focus solely on content that has already been covered in the topics of the lesson.

 

Supporting Lesson Plan Components

In addition to these components, CAWST lesson plans include a list of required materials to deliver the lesson, a reminder of key points, trainer tips, and recommended readings. These components further support the trainer to deliver an effective lesson and the learner to achieve optimal learning in WASH.


References

Boundless. (2014, 06 27). Learning Outcomes. Retrieved 03 25, 2015, from Boundless Education: https://www.boundless.com/education/textbooks/boundless-education-textbook/curriculum-and-instructional-design-3/lesson-plans-and-learning-objectives-16/learning-outcomes-51-12981/

Froelich. (2009). Effective Lesson Design: A basic conceptual outline. Retrieved from Looking at Learning: http://www.lookingatlearning.org/downloads/Effective%20Lesson%20Design.pdf

University of British Columbia Wiki. (2012). Mini-Lessons Basics/BOPPPS Model for Planning Lessons (Teaching and Learning). Retrieved from UBC Wiki: http://wiki.ubc.ca/Mini-Lessons_Basics/BOPPPS_Model_for_Planning_Lessons_%28Teaching_and_Learning%29


 Learn more


Stay tuned for our Trainer Essentials on Creating Effective WASH Training, to be released in  2018.

To learn more about becoming a more effective trainer in WASH, see our Trainer Collection: Effective WASH Training Workshop.

CAWST offers a variety of training and consulting support services to help you improve your WASH training skills and design effective education initiatives. Find out more about our Delivering and Creating Effective WASH Training services.

 

Lisa Mitchell, MES, is the Acting Director on the Education Program Development team at CAWST. 

Colombia Innovates for Safe Water Access in Dispersed Populations

In Colombia, a new legislation is opening the door for implementation of large-scale non-networked water and sanitation solutions to reach vulnerable populations in rural, dispersed regions.

There is increasing recognition around the world that conventional sewered and piped systems are not the only solution for providing quality water and sanitation services. These traditional approaches can be complemented by non-sewered sanitation systems and non-networked water supply and treatment systems to complete the service chain across different contexts: urban, peri-urban, and rural.

In Colombia, for example, Decree 1898 is a new legislation regarding universal access to basic services. It recognizes that to reach full water and sanitation coverage for the most vulnerable populations in rural and dispersed areas, traditional implementation mechanisms, including those for water quality assurance, are not sufficient. This opens the door for government agencies to acknowledge, evaluate and accept alternative viable, context-appropriate solutions to improve water quality and sanitation for remote populations that have historically not had access to these services.

Through this new approach, Colombia has the opportunity to lead by example, paving the way for other countries in Latin America who face similar challenges in achieving universal coverage. Successful programs in Colombia would demonstrate to other governments and/or large international institutions the feasibility of implementing large-scale non-networked solutions.

The Ministry of Housing, City and Territory (responsible for the implementation of water and sanitation projects) spearheaded this new legislation. The Decree explicitly recognizes the importance of coordination between ministries, which bodes well for achieving universal access through a combination of approaches. As a result, the following ministries are also involved: the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, the Ministry of Health and Social Protection (responsible for water quality), and the Planning Department.

In many parts of the world, different ministries can have differing competencies and mandates, which is often a barrier to implementing practical solutions. For example, in a hypothetical country, let’s imagine a particular ministry appreciates how household water treatment could effectively support underserved populations to achieve better access to safe water, due to the lack of an affordable, appropriate solution that meets existing standards. On the other hand, a different ministry is responsible for water quality standards. Decisions made by this other ministry are informed by standards that were designed for traditional, networked, urban water systems. Since alternative technologies would not comply with these strict standards they would not be implemented, even though they would represent a significant improvement. This lack of coordination between ministries most affects people with lower incomes who live in remote areas, as they end up consuming water that is fecally contaminated, untreated, and unsafe to drink by any standards.

In contrast, Colombia’s new collaborative, inter-ministerial approach bridges this barrier, furthering acceptance of household water treatment and safe storage (HWTS) at the political level. This holds great promise for reaching underserved populations in areas of urban and peri-urban growth and in remote, dispersed rural communities.

The Multi-barrier Approach to Safe Water

 

Kick-starting HWTS in Colombia

At a key juncture in the development of this new national legislation, CAWST delivered a HWTS seminar in Colombia to develop the capacity of a variety of stakeholders. We successfully converged 28 representatives of government, NGOs, academia, rural aqueducts, unions, HWTS product manufacturers and distributors, and Rotary clubs. The participation of government institutions involved in the development of legislation relevant to the topic, such as the Vice Ministry of Water and Basic Sanitation and the Ministry of Health, was critical.

The seminar was organized with the support of CAPD (Canadian Association for Participatory Development) and Fundación Red Proyecto Gente (FRPG), who through the Agua Sana Program, promote HWTS and implement biosand filters to bring safe water to families in need. Iván Castro and Rocío Robayo of FRPG played key roles in the seminar, both in its organization and in supporting CAWST to facilitate. It included a presentation on Decree 1898 by a representative of the Vice Ministry of Water. This seminar would not have been possible without the financial support provided by the WorleyParsons Foundation. We appreciate the valuable contributions of all partners and participants.

The workshop conveyed independent, research-based information on the different HWTS technology options for the multi-barrier approach. Further, it provided participants with knowledge and skills to evaluate these options based on the target population, as well as key guidelines for the implementation of HWTS programs. Beyond achieving these objectives, it also served as an opportunity for participants from different fields within the WASH sector to share their experiences, and for the public sector and other institutions to commit to collaborate in applying the new legislation to address the needs of rural Colombian communities. This was by far the biggest success of this event.

CAWST is immensely excited to be a part of this overture in Colombia’s history, and we look forward to the opportunity to continue supporting capacity development in WASH at all levels of government, from local communities and municipalities to national government agencies.


For more information on CAWST’s training and consulting services in Latin America, please contact Eva Manzano, International Technical Advisor, at emanzano@cawst.org. Eva speaks Spanish, English, and Italian.

Context-Specific Information for Humanitarian Practitioners: HWTS Mobile App and Country Focus Pages

For humanitarian practitioners working in remote regions, online connectivity is often a challenge. The new HWTS mobile app and Country Focus pages address this issue, helping you access context-specific information on the go.

CAWST is creating a centralized, web-based, knowledge and technical support hub on Household Water Treatment and Safe Storage (HWTS) solutions to support humanitarian water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) practitioners. Context-specific information in the HWTS Knowledge Base is now even more accessible, with the new HWTS mobile app and Country Focus pages.

In our previous blog post introducing the Household Water Treatment and Safe Storage (HWTS) Knowledge Base, we emphasized the need for readily available information on solutions that are context-appropriate. While this need exists across water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) interventions, CAWST’s HWTS Knowledge Base focuses specifically on point-of-use water treatment solutions for households. It is designed to serve as a one-stop shop for practitioners who want to learn about HWTS options that are appropriate for the context in which they’re working. To optimize the availability of this information, it is now available both online and also accessible to those working in areas without connectivity. We have also made progress on the accessibility of the Knowledge Base and increased the availability of context-specific information through the launch of the HWTS Knowledge Base mobile app and Country Focus pages.

New HWTS mobile app


– The HWTS Knowledge Base Mobile App

To increase accessibility offline, this summer we launched the HWTS mobile app. For iOS and Android users, the app is available in the App Store and Google Play, respectively. For Windows users, the app is available on USB sticks, currently distributed through our international technical advisors. The Windows app is fully functional offline, meaning that all content, including downloadable items, is contained within the app. For iOS and Android platforms, all the page content is available on the app, and downloadable content can be accessed when WiFi is available. Because connectivity is a challenge for international development practitioners working in remote regions, we hope that the app will increase their ability to access information anytime, anywhere they need it.

Country focus pages


– Ethiopia Country Focus Page

Previously, the majority of the content on the Knowledge Base was organized by product. While the Products page is still on the website, it’s now also possible to view content by country on the Country Focus pages. Every country has its own page that gathers any information on the Knowledge Base that is tagged to that country, including products, projects, research and other supporting documents. In addition to presenting existing content, we’re working to add additional country-specific content that is relevant to HWTS implementation, including drinking water standards, government strategies and policy analysis documents. Currently, such content is available for Ethiopia, Ghana and Myanmar. Over the coming months, CAWST staff, partner organizations and practitioners will be working together to add information on other countries. We look forward to hearing from you and getting your input!

Interested in collaborating to share your HWTS experience? Excellent! Please email us at support@cawst.org.


The HWTS Knowledge Base project is supported by Elrha’s Humanitarian Innovation Fund – a grant making facility supporting organisations and individuals to identify, nurture and share. Visit www.humanitarianinnovation.org and www.elrha.org for more information about Elrha’s work to improve humanitarian outcomes through research, innovation, and partnership.

Beyond Technical Knowledge – 6 Essential Community WASH Promoter Competencies

Community WASH Promoters (CWPs) play a key role in sustainable WASH implementation. Our soon to be released Competency Framework for CWPs helps plan for growth, with clear guidelines for personal and professional development.

Community WASH Promoters (CWPs) play a key role in sustainable WASH implementation. Our soon to be released Competency Framework for CWPs helps plan for growth, with clear guidelines for personal and professional development.

We recently released our Competency Framework for Trainers, and as part of our suite of competencies for WASH roles, we will soon be releasing our 2nd role: the Competency Framework for Community WASH Promoters.

Effective Community WASH Promoters can play an essential role in sustainable WASH program implementation. They are the key link between organizations and communities. People can overlook their potential to transform communities through leadership, advocacy, and championing for positive change. They play such a crucial role, yet organizations can fail to invest in effectively preparing and leveraging them to achieve impact. Earlier this year, CAWST developed the new Community WASH Promotion workshop to train individuals to effectively work with individuals to achieve behaviour change. Only one third of the workshop’s content covers technical WASH, with priority given to understanding factors that drive behaviour, critical thinking, and communication skills. This new Competency Framework for Community WASH Promoters follows that same principle.

To successfully achieve behaviour change and transform communities, having technical knowledge about WASH is a great start – but it’s not enough. Simply having knowledge about a subject does not mean that one can communicate its importance to others and achieve positive change effectively.

So, what other types of competencies, besides those related to technical WASH knowledge, do Community WASH Promoters need?

Competencies are the abilities required to perform certain roles to various levels of success. Using a competency framework is not simply a way to evaluate effectiveness against a designated standard. It is a tool to be used to demonstrate a clear path for growth; a guide for the professional and personal development of individuals to be more successful in a certain role. We have clustered these abilities into larger competency groups for Community WASH Promoters:

  1. Community Engagement
  2. Communication
  3. Promotion
  4. Critical Thinking
  5. Professional Development and Continued Education
  6. WASH

Each competency can be categorized in three progressive levels of proficiency. As an individual develops their competencies, they will build confidence, initiative, and leadership.

For example, here is a sneak peek of two of the competencies under the Community Engagement group.

1. Community Engagement

Coordination with Stakeholders

Foundation  Intermediate Advanced
·  Describes the importance for partnerships in achieving community health targets
·  Identifies different stakeholders in WASH and health initiatives in target communities
·  Encourages interactions and dialogue between different community stakeholders
·  Seeks opportunities to link WASH initiatives with those of other stakeholders
·  Effectively builds networks of contacts within stakeholder groups
·  Encourages coordination of stakeholder plans and activities

 

Community Dialogue

Foundation  Intermediate Advanced
·  Actively seeks out and develops relationships with community members
·  Makes themselves available if community people approach them with questions
·  Mobilizes people in the community who have social influence or skill sets
·  Creates spaces, events, or opportunities for community people to come together to discuss shared concerns
·  Advocates for healthy public policies and services
·  Generates excitement for individuals and communities to achieve change
·  Works with communities to create indicators for improvement

 

Find all 6 essential competencies, groups and categories in our Competency Framework for Community WASH Promoters, a comprehensive toolkit that will soon be available on our Resources website.

 

Training Resources  

Learn more by accessing these new open content resources to support your WASH program implementation:

Competency Framework for Community WASH Promoters – COMING SOON!

Competency Framework for Trainers – Trainer Collection

Community WASH Promotion (CWP) Workshop Training Toolkit. As with all our workshops, CAWST can deliver this workshop globally. Check our training calendar often, to find a workshop near you.


Vincent Masterson, B.Comn., B.Ed., is an International Education & Training Advisor at CAWST. In celebration of Canada’s 150th anniversary of Confederation, Vincent was profiled this year by The Philanthropist Magazine among 150 outstanding Canadians who work or volunteer in Canada’s social sector.

Beyond the Visible: the Personal Impact of Capacity Development

International Technical Advisor Eva Manzano bears witness to the personal impact of her work, as reflected in the inspiring leadership of one of her students in a remote community in Colombia.

International Technical Advisor Eva Manzano bears witness to the personal impact of her work, as reflected in the inspiring leadership of one of her students in a remote community in Colombia.

I met Luis Puishaina a year ago at a Delivering Effective WASH Training workshop in Bucaramanga, Colombia.

Luis had been hired to implement biosand filters in a remote rural area of La Guajira, a department in the northeastern coast of Colombia. This area has been devastated by severe droughts for decades. It also has the largest indigenous population of any Colombian department. Luis belongs to the Wayuu community, the most extended indigenous group in the region, and he speaks one of the main local languages, Wayuunaiki.

At the workshop, I remember Luis being reserved and uneasy, and even having severe difficulty speaking up in class and reading out loud. I assumed this was partially because Spanish is his second language – something to which I can certainly relate, since English is my second language too. Although it was clearly difficult for him, Luis put in lots of effort to prepare and deliver his practice sessions, and in the class we encouraged him and appreciated how he was overcoming his nerves and trying really hard. You can’t imagine his smile when he got his certificate: he sent pictures to all his family and proudly shared his photo for all his friends to see on social media!

After the workshop, I visited Luis in La Guajira to help him overcome some technical difficulties installing biosand filters properly. I also gave him some tips on how to carry out the household visits and support families on key hygiene behaviours. He listened carefully and took note throughout our conversations.


-Luis confidently shares his knowledge and experiences with fellow WASH implementers in Colombia.

Even though we kept in touch electronically over the last few months, I had not seen Luis in person until a couple of weeks ago in Santa Marta, where we organized a workshop for Biosand Filter Technicians. I could hardly believe how much Luis had changed in just one year! He no longer has any problem at all sharing his experiences and knowledge with a group. With confidence, passion, and enthusiasm, Luis told us about his work helping his ranchería (as the local communities are called) by leading a needs assessment and identifying water as his community’s main need. Luis is so strongly committed to bring safe water to his ranchería that along with the needs assessment, he has even developed a proposal for a local foundation on his own!

When I congratulated Luis on the work he has been doing, and pointed out how proud he must feel of his professional growth in helping his community, fluently communicating and supporting vulnerable Wayuu families, he told me that coming to that DEWT workshop had changed him completely. It made him realize how overcoming his introversion, developing certain skills to present and communicate information, relate to his audience, and disseminate complex information would make him better able to help his whole community to have clean water and better health. What he learned at the workshop gave him the confidence boost and the motivation he needed to pursue further learning, and develop his professional skills so he could effectively teach others in his community and succeed in instilling behaviour change.

Throughout our professional lives we tend to fixate squarely on measurable objectives, reports, and key performance indicators. There is, of course, good reason to factor these in. Reflecting on the year that is ending, however, I find that it is the personal impact of our work, beyond what is visible to the eye, that can best serve as both a grounding reality check and an inspiring force to move forward. Out of all my professional endeavours this year, I feel especially fulfilled by the results of that first workshop with Luis, and grateful for what I have learned from him. By his trailblazing example, Luis has demonstrated how our work developing capacity propels grit and leadership, deeply impacting the lives of our clients and through them, the lives of people in their communities. Thanks to emerging community leaders like Luis, who are courageously stepping up to help meet their communities’ needs for water, sanitation and hygiene, together we are reaching and making a difference in the most impoverished, remote rural communities around the world. And that’s more than enough inspiration for us all to continue toiling on next year.


Eva Manzano, BEng, MA, is an International Technical Advisor on CAWST’s Global Services team. She has provided training and consulting services to our clients in Latin America and Southeast Asia since 2011. Eva speaks Spanish, English and Italian.

CAWST in the News: Financial Post Names CAWST One of Canada’s Most Efficient and Accountable Charities

The Financial Post has named CAWST one of Canada’s most efficient and accountable charities! CAWST was one of only 23 charities in Canada selected among thousands for its financial prudence, transparency and accountability.

Banner image: Financial Post.

Image: Financial Post

 

The Financial Post has named CAWST one of Canada’s most efficient and accountable charities! CAWST was one of only 23 charities in Canada selected among thousands for its financial prudence, transparency and accountability.

Read the Financial Post Magazine’s annual charities report card.

 

From the 2017 report:

Financial Post Magazine’s annual charities report card is all about accountability. Donors have a right to know what’s happening with their money, and we publish the donor accountability scores of each year’s winning charities because we believe the impact they have is the most important thing for donors to know about. But the 23 charities that made the grade also had to do more.

We are delighted and proud that CAWST was selected as one of Canada’s top charities this year. A huge thank you to our Board, staff, donors, volunteers, WET Centre partners, clients, members, collaborators and supporters, without whom we could not have reached 15.4 million people since 2001 with safe water or sanitation.

Warmest congratulations to the other 22 top charities across Canada who were selected. We are inspired by the wonderful work of your organizations, and profoundly honoured and grateful to be named among you.

Thank you Financial Post!


Looking for a meaningful gift for your colleagues, friends and loved ones this holiday season? Give CAWST’s Gift of Water: a gift that empowers people with the water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) knowledge they need to open doors to healthy homes.


– Community WASH Promoters share water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) knowledge in Zambia, opening doors to healthy homes.

Coffee with CAWST: Amanda Deis

Meet Amanda. Amanda is a mother of three and a devoted volunteer with CAWST. With International Volunteer Day happening on December 5, we wanted to have a Coffee with CAWST Volunteers.

Amanda Deis

Current Role: Volunteer

Meet Amanda. Amanda is a mother of three and a devoted volunteer with CAWST. She is a life-long learner who loves the outdoors. Amanda has taken on various volunteer positions with CAWST, from cutting mesh and assembling sieves to helping with events. With International Volunteer Day happening on December 5, we wanted to have a Coffee with CAWST Volunteers. If you’re interested in volunteering: Take Action!

What fills your days? 

My days are filled with a balance of the chaos and excitement of three young boys! In between swimming lessons and mountains of laundry, I try to squeeze in adventures with the kids to places like the library, zoo and science centre. Our weekends are usually spent bike riding, hiking, or searching for wildlife in Fish Creek Park.

When you were a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?

When I was a child I wanted to be a pilot so I could travel. I also considered becoming a nurse until a high school biology lab had us examining pig organs and I realized how squeamish I am. The teacher saw me turning white and sent me to the other room to gather supplies.

What is a fun fact about you that we might not expect?

I really wish I had a great fun fact to share. I took up swimming a couple of years ago and spend my summer evenings swimming laps in the community lake. I also took salsa lessons last year, after several years of not-so-subtle hints to my husband. I am now proudly a Level 1 Salsa dancer.

What brought you to CAWST?

I have always been interested in international development and after high school I spent a month in Ghana. I learned first-hand that many don’t have access to clean water to drink or bathe, or a safe place to go to the bathroom. I was fortunate to be able to buy bottled water, but was not overly excited with having to use a crude pit latrine, with little privacy and nowhere to properly wash your hands. Water for bathing had to be collected from a well that was surrounded by standing water, and swarming with mosquitoes. I was sick more than once during my trip, but fortunate to have money to buy medication. What was a temporary inconvenience for me was a daily, unsafe reality for so many.

Being a stay at home mom, I’ve tried to take the opportunity to stay involved and volunteer whenever I can. I’ve spent time volunteering at a women’s shelter, in my kids’ classrooms, and at events around Calgary. I first learned about CAWST reading a banner on an overpass a few years ago. I was quite excited to see such an organization in Calgary.

My background is in environmental science, so CAWST is the perfect combination of science and international development that I was looking for. I signed up for a volunteer shift cutting mesh and assembling sieves, in 2014, and have been helping out with events and projects in the office ever since. I have found volunteering with CAWST to be incredibly rewarding and love that the staff go out of their way to support the volunteers and to say thank you, again and again.

Describe CAWST in one word. Empowering.

What is your favourite place that you have travelled? I think I would have to say Thailand. Spending six weeks there, I had a wonderful opportunity to travel around and explore the beaches, forests and lively cities. I fell in love with the lush landscape, friendly people, delicious food, and rich culture and history. My happy place is a beautiful, quiet cove on the island of Ko Pha Ngan with an amazing little reef, perfect for snorkeling.

Coffee with CAWST  is a blog series, where we have coffee and conversation with some of the outstanding people behind CAWST. Please let us know what you think, ask questions and stay tuned for more!

World Toilet Day Film Review

On November 19, World Toilet Day, we hosted a film screening of the Bollywood hit, Toilet: A Love Story (Ek Prem Katha) to spread knowledge in Calgary about sanitation. We reviewed the film, with a sanitation lens, of course. Read on to learn more about how this blockbuster surprises and delights while addressing this tricky topic.

Toilet: A Love Story

Bollywood with Surprising Subject Matter


Jaya and Keshav in a colorful dance scene from Toilet: A Love Story

In form, Toilet: Ek Prem Katha or Toilet: A Love Story echoes its Bollywood counterparts: long, colourful, and embellished with song and dance. In function, however, the comedy-drama carries a powerful social message about the lack of basic sanitation in India, a foremost issue highlighted in the recently launched Swachh Bharat Abhiyan, or Clean India Campaign.

Director Shree Narayan Singh unveils a captivating love story soon disrupted when Jaya (Bhumi Pednekar) leaves her new husband Keshav (famous Bollywood actor and sanitation advocate, Akshay Kurman) because he does not have a toilet. Some may assume the plot could only exist in the dramatics of the big screen, but it is an example of art imitating life for a young newlywed in India whose experience sparked the government’s No Toilet No Bride campaign.

Singh holds a mirror to society in his examination of the practice of defecating outdoors. Besides the obvious risks to human health, the film explores generational divides, based in age-old traditions and behaviours, and gender inequality; particularly the perils of privacy and safety women face in order to relieve themselves.

It is estimated that 892 million people defecate outside, so it is a tall task to transform a traditionally taboo topic into a blockbuster success. Toilet: Ek Prem Katha does just that in a way that balances education and entertainment.

We asked our sanitation specialists to rate Toilet: A Love Story based on some key topics in sanitation

Toilet Design 

Although the focus of the movie is not on toilet design, there is a fabulous scene where Keshav builds a beautiful toilet along to a catchy song. You can see the different steps and supplies needed to build a toilet. The topic of shared and public toilets is also addressed throughout the film, which suggests that a public toilet is an option, but there is nothing better than having your toilet.

Role of Government 

The role of government in sanitation is a key part of this film. It brings up questions such as: What should the role of local government be to end open defecation?

Fecal Sludge Management 

The focus of the film is on behaviour change and toilets. Therefore, it only makes sense that the topic of fecal sludge management is not addressed in this movie. Perhaps if they do a sequel, “Toilet: It’s Full” they will address this topic.

Behaviour Change 

Toilet focuses on behaviour change. Various barriers prevent someone from getting a toilet. In this movie, the main barrier is the tradition that only animals are allowed to defecate near the home, and that humans should defecate far away from the house, in the fields. The key motivation for getting a latrine is the comfort and safety of women using household toilets. The movie highlights the struggle between respecting traditions and family values and the vulnerability of women having to defecate in the open.

Developing Competencies 

The movie highlights the lack of understanding among community members on the importance of toilets. Jaya plays a key role in trying to educate others on toilets, with a memorable monologue targeted at the other women of the community. Keshav also tries to educate the community at a town meeting. However, competencies on design and construction are not addressed in this film. Unfortunately, this is another big problem in India.

Handwashing 

Handwashing is not a main topic of the movie, but the disgust of not washing your hands after defecation is present a few times in the movie. When Keshav and Jaya meet in the train, Jaya is disgusted that Keshav did not wash his hands after using the toilet.


References

WHO/UNICEF Joint Monitoring Programme. (2017). Progress on Drinking Water, Sanitation and Hygiene. Available at: http://www.unwater.org/publications/whounicef-joint-monitoring-program-water-supply-sanitation-hygiene-jmp-2017-update-sdg-baselines/

 

Providing Safe Water in Emergencies: Context is King

CAWST is creating a centralized, web-based, knowledge and technical support hub on Household Water Treatment and Safe Storage (HWTS) solutions to support humanitarian WASH practitioners. Recently, we’ve made progress on the accessibility of the Knowledge Base and increased the availability of context-specific information through the launch of the HWTS Knowledge Base mobile app and Country Focus pages.

CAWST is creating a centralized, web-based, knowledge and technical support hub on Household Water Treatment and Safe Storage (HWTS) solutions to support humanitarian WASH practitioners.

In our previous blog post introducing the Household Water Treatment and Safe Storage (HWTS) Knowledge Base, we emphasized the need for readily available information on solutions that are context-appropriate. While this need exists across Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) interventions, CAWST’s HWTS Knowledge Base focuses specifically on point-of-use water treatment solutions for households. It is designed to serve as a one-stop shop for emergency response practitioners who want to learn about HWTS options that are appropriate for the context in which they’re working. We’d like to make this information not only available online but also accessible to those working in areas without connectivity. Recently, we’ve made progress on the accessibility of the Knowledge Base and increased the availability of context-specific information through the launch of the HWTS Knowledge Base mobile app and Country Focus pages.

The mobile app


– The HWTS Knowledge Base Mobile App

To increase accessibility offline, we launched the mobile app this summer. For iOS and Android users, the app is available in the App Store and Google Play, respectively. For Windows users, the app is available on USB sticks, currently distributed through our international technical advisors. The Windows app works fully offline, meaning that all content, including downloadable items, is contained within the app. For iOS and Android platforms, all of the page content is available on the app, and downloadable content can be accessed when WiFi is available. Because connectivity is a challenge in emergency response, we hope that the app will increase the ability of practitioners to access information when they need it.

Country focus pages

Context is king – a point that Cecilie Hestbaek, HIF Innovation Adviser, recently highlighted during a session on HWTS in emergencies at the 2017 Water and Health Conference at the Water Institute at UNC. The gap in evidence on the performance and acceptability of household water filters in emergency contexts was the focus of the presentations and discussion during the latter half of the event. In addition to addressing this gap, it’s also critical to make existing information on HWTS in specific contexts available to emergency response practitioners, as research has found that behaviours, practices and familiarity with HWTS solutions before emergency onset are key determinants to achieving effective use of HWTS in emergencies (Lantagne & Clasen 2012). Our new Country Focus pages aim to do just that.


– Ethiopia Country Focus Page

Previously, the majority of the content on the Knowledge Base was organized by product. While the Products page is still on the website, it’s now also possible to view content by country on the Country Focus pages. Every country has its own page that gathers any information on the Knowledge Base that is tagged to that country, including products, projects, research and other supporting documents. In addition to presenting existing content, we’re working to add additional country-specific content that is relevant to HWTS implementation, including drinking water standards, government strategies and policy analysis documents. Currently, such content is available for Ethiopia, Ghana and Myanmar. Over the coming months, we will be working with CAWST staff, partner organizations and practitioners to add information on other countries. We look forward to hearing from you and getting your input!

 

This blog post first appeared on the ELRHA-HIF Blog here.
Visit www.humanitarianinnovation.org and www.elrha.org for more information about Elrha’s work to improve humanitarian outcomes through research, innovation, and partnership.


Laura MacDonald, BSc, MSE, PhD, is a Knowledge and Research Advisor on the Research & Learning team at CAWST.

Web Developer

The web developer will play a central role in the development and integration of CAWST web properties, most notably: CAWST’s main website (www.cawst.org); the Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) Resource Website (resources.cawst.org); the Biosand Filter Knowledge Base (biosandfilters.info); the Household Water Treatment Knowledge Base (www.htws.info); and online, mobile apps, and e-Learning integration.

The web developer will play a central role in the development and integration of CAWST web properties, most notably: CAWST’s main website (www.cawst.org); the Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) Resource Website (resources.cawst.org); the Biosand Filter Knowledge Base (biosandfilters.info); the Household Water Treatment Knowledge Base (www.hwts.info); and online, mobile services, mobile apps, and e-Learning digital tool integration.

The Position: Web Developer.

Reports to: Director, International Partnerships & Virtual Services.

Type: Full time, permanent. – Will consider part-time.

Position start date: As soon as possible.

Application due date: This position will be open until filled. Applications are reviewed on a rolling basis.

 

Responsibilities

  • Full-stack development of our Education & Training and Knowledge Base websites as part of a Virtual Water Expertise and Training service to support international development and capacity building professionals
  • Develop and maintain a RESTful API in node.js to integrate various data-driven web sites
  • Work with graphics and front-end developer team members to maintain and develop new features on existing platforms
  • Create, deploy and maintain hybrid HTML/Javascript/Cordova cross-platform applications for iOS, Android, macOS and Windows
  • Design data models to consolidate and migrate diverse digital content from existing Content Management Systems
  • Take the lead in managing the existing virtual infrastructure and actively engage in DevOps practices
  • Collaborate within an interdisciplinary team to manage various campaigns, short-term projects and long-term projects


Education

Post-secondary degree in Computer Science, Software Engineering or related field.


Experience

At least 2 years experience in:

  • Developing RESTful APIs with modern languages and frameworks (Node.js, Express.js, etc.)
  • NoSQL experience (currently using RethinkDB and MongoDB), and understand suitable use cases
  • Front-end development using AngularJS, HTML5, Javascript, and CSS
  • Hybrid application development using cross-platform frameworks (Cordova, Ionic, etc.)
  • Experience with Git source code version control
  • Experience managing Cloud resources (e.g. DigitalOcean, AWS EC2/S3/ElasticSearch)
  • RDBMS experience and ability to write SQL queries

Bonus if you have experience in:

  • C# for interaction with Dynamics CRM
  • Administration of Apache Web Servers and/or Nginx on Linux, including SSL certificate management
  • Single sign-on management (Auth0)
  • Experience working with content delivery networks like MaxCDN or CloudFlare

 

Skills and Attributes

  • Passion for CAWST and our cause!
  • Organized: Project management skills. Enjoys handling multiple tasks in a fast-paced environment with competing priorities
  • Attention to detail: Able to manage all components down to the last detail
  • Problem solver: Able to think creatively about challenges, resolve issues and seek support when necessary
  • Analytical capability: Assess opportunities and make recommendations
  • Team player: An accomplished professional who can work well both independently and within a team

 

Compensation

Discussed in the personal interview. Please include your salary expectations (range) in your cover letter or email.

Eligibility

You must be legally able to work in Canada.

 


 

To Apply

Please send your cover letter, resume and answers to the questionnaire below to cawstHR@cawst.org. Position will be open until filled. No phone calls please.  Only those granted an interview will be contacted.

 

Questionnaire

Please answer all questions to the best of your ability. Be as specific as possible and try to keep each answer under half a page.

  1. What has motivated you to consider working at CAWST?
  2. What excites you most about this particular role at CAWST?
  3. What are your long-term career goals and aspirations? Where do you see yourself in five years?

Organizational Background

CAWST is a Canadian charity that focuses on the principle that safe water and basic sanitation are fundamentals necessary to empower the world’s poorest people and break the cycle of poverty. CAWST transfers knowledge and skills to organizations and individuals in low- and middle-income countries through education, training, and consulting services. Since 2001, CAWST’s global client network, including governments, community-based charitable organizations, local enterprises, international development agencies, and educational institutions, has helped 15.4 million people get better water or sanitation.

  • Our vision is a world where people have the opportunity to succeed because their basic water and sanitation needs have been met.
  • Our mission is to provide technical training and consulting, and to act as a centre of expertise in water and sanitation for the poor in developing countries.

CAWST values equitable opportunities, sustainable solutions, and collaborative and inclusive processes. We recognize and accept differences in cultural, religious and political processes.

The Financial Post newspaper named CAWST one of the Top 23 Charities in Canada in 2017. Read the article.

 

How Water Knowledge Opens Doors to Healthy Homes

You can’t change what you don’t know – and many people don’t know that the reason they keep getting sick is that their water is unsafe. Even when they do realize the water is not safe, they often don’t know that there are simple and affordable solutions they can implement themselves to get safe clean water in their homes. Here is an example of water knowledge opening doors to thousands of healthy homes in Zambia.

In communities where people lack access to safe, clean drinking water and basic sanitation, they often get sick with diarrhea. Worldwide, diarrheal disease is the second leading cause of death in children under five years old. Each year, more than half a million children under five die of diarrhea.

The good news? It doesn’t have to be this way.

Diarrhea is preventable. And you can help.

Here’s how.

The best way to help the poorest people in the world have healthy homes is to go beyond temporary solutions, and invest in developing human capital. Equipped with knowledge and skills in water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH), people can help themselves and others, achieving sustainable impact. It’s the same concept behind the old adage about teaching people to fish rather than giving them a fish.

We’ll show you how this works through an example. We can open doors to healthy homes by investing in people. People like Gladys.

Meet Gladys Chipalabela.


– Gladys Chipalabela (right), with her daughter Tikho (left).

Gladys lives in Mbalo, Zambia. She works as a WASH trainer at Seeds of Hope International Partnerships (SHIP), one of CAWST’s Water Expertise and Training (WET) Centres. Gladys and her colleagues at SHIP teach people how to access safe water in their homes using simple, affordable technologies that they can implement themselves.

More widely, they teach them about the multi-barrier approach to safe water: how to protect their water sources, transport and treat (sediment, filter, and disinfect) their water, and then store it safely. By doing this, at each step of this process people reduce their risk of drinking unsafe, fecally contaminated water. Gladys and her WASH trainer colleagues also teach about environmental sanitation and the importance of hygiene practices, like handwashing at critical times.

Exposing someone to new information is just the beginning.

It’s not enough to know what to do. To achieve healthy homes where people don’t get sick with WASH-related diarrhea, we must get to behaviour change: persuading people to act on what they have learned and be motivated to change the way they do things moving forward. For example, it is not enough to only wash your hands before preparing the food sometimes, yet sometimes neglect to wash them at all, or just rinse them without using soap. Besides, for the impact to be sustainable, users also need to know how to properly operate and maintain the technologies they are using in their homes, otherwise they will eventually fail and they will get sick again. Overall, to have healthy homes, people need to practice good WASH correctly, consistently, and continuously over time.

That’s where Community Health Promoters (CHPs) come in.

What are CHPs?

Community Health Promoters –or CHPs, also sometimes called WASH Promoters– educate community members on the importance of WASH for good health, help them act on this information, and implement WASH interventions.

Implement WASH interventions? What does that mean?

CHPs visit the homes of people in their community, assess the challenges and issues they have, and walk alongside them to help them take the necessary steps in achieving a healthy home. These include household water treatment, safe water storage, latrines, handwashing devices, dish drying racks, and garbage pits.

But who trains Community Health Promoters?

Gladys and her colleagues train Community Heath Promoters, who then go on to reach end users in their homes, in remote rural communities across Zambia and neighbouring countries such as Ethiopia, Uganda, and Malawi. Moreover, complementing their technical WASH knowledge, CAWST’s new Community WASH Promotion workshop also develops CHPs’ and CWPs’ critical thinking, soft skills, and other role-specific abilities, to better equip them in achieving behavioural change in their communities.

Gladys has been working at SHIP since 2011. Over the past 5 years, people like Gladys have reached almost 27,000 people, who now have healthy homes.

How can we train more people like Gladys?

Give CAWST’s Gift of Water this holiday season, to help train more people like Gladys through the Healthy Homes program in Zambia, which empowers community agents to drive change in their communities. Together, we can go beyond temporary solutions, and open doors to healthy homes.

Learn more about the work of CAWST and SHIP with CHPs in Zambia.

The Financial Post named CAWST one of Canada’s most efficient and accountable charities in 2017. CAWST was one of only 23 charities in Canada selected among thousands for its financial prudence, transparency and accountability. Read the Financial Post Magazine’s annual charities report card.


References

  • Prüss-Ustün, A., Bartram, J., Clasen, T., Colford, J. M., Cumming, O., Curtis, V., et al. (2014). Burden of disease from inadequate water, sanitation and hygiene in low- and middle-income settings: a retrospective analysis of data from 145 countries. Tropical Medicine & International Health, 19(8), 894–905. http://doi.org/10.1111/tmi.12329
  • WHO. (2014) Preventing Diarrhoea through Better Water, Sanitation and Hygiene: Exposures and impacts in low- and middle-income countries. Geneva: WHO.

CAWST in the News: Shauna Curry on Global News Morning Calgary

CAWST’s CEO, Shauna Curry, appeared on Global News Calgary to chat about global water and sanitation issues, and how Calgarians can get involved to help resolve them.

CAWST CEO, Shauna Curry, appeared earlier today on Global News Morning Calgary to share the challenges facing billions without access to safe water and sanitation, and the progress that can be made through training and empowering people to implement simple, affordable technologies. Shauna shared options for how viewers can take action. On Sunday, November 19, CAWST held an event for World Toilet Day, to raise awareness on sanitation through a sidewalk toilet display and film screening of the Bollywood blockbuster, Toilet: A Love Story. CAWST is also currently running its Gift of Water campaign, up until January 1, 2018. The campaign aims to raise $10,000 for Healthy Homes in Zambia. Consider giving a Gift of Water this holiday season.