Friday, March 21, 2014

New Sesame Street muppet comes to life in support of cleaner, healthier latrines

The need for better sanitation in the developing world is clear. Forty percent of the world’s population—2.5 billion people—practice open defecation or lack adequate sanitation facilities, and the consequences can be devastating for human health as well as the environment. Even in urban areas, where household and communal toilets are more prevalent, 2.1 billion people use toilets connected to septic tanks that are not safely emptied or use other systems that discharge raw sewage into open drains or surface waters.

Poor sanitation contributes to 1.5 million child deaths from diarrhea each year. Chronic diarrhea can also hinder child development by impeding the absorption of essential nutrients that are critical to the development of the mind, body, and immune system. It can also impede the absorption of life-saving vaccines. 

Creating sanitation infrastructure and public services that work for everyone, including poor people, and that keep waste out of the environment is a major challenge. The toilets, sewers, and wastewater treatment systems used in the developed world require vast amounts of land, energy, and water—and they are expensive to build and maintain. Existing alternatives that are less expensive are often unappealing because of impractical designs or because they retain odors and attract insects.

Any investment in better sanitation—including the construction of pit latrines—can help improve public health and quality of life. Better sanitation reduces child diarrhea and improves overall child health. For women and girls in particular, improved sanitation offers greater dignity, privacy, and personal safety.

But solving the sanitation challenge in the developing world will require radically new innovations that are deployable on a large scale. Innovation is especially needed in urban areas, where billions of people are only capturing and storing their waste, with no sustainable way to handle it once their on-site storage—such as a septic tank or latrine pit—fills up.

One promising approach is to seek solutions that have the appeal of the flush toilet connected to a sewer network, but don’t require that infrastructure so would therefore be more affordable, better for the environment, and less wasteful of resources.

Groundbreaking improvements in toilet design, pit emptying, and sludge treatment, as well as new ways to reuse waste, can help governments and their partners meet the enormous challenge of providing quality public sanitation services—particularly in densely populated urban neighborhoods.

The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation through its  Water, Sanitation & Hygiene program has organised the Reinvent the Toilet Fair 2014 in New Delhi that focuses on the development of tools and technologies that can lead to radical and sustainable improvements in sanitation in the developing world. Although they support some clean water and hygiene projects, sanitation is their top priority because they have identified it as a neglected area in which they can spur significant change.

I am currently at the Fair and believe me, I have witnessed some of the most innovative technologies of this century. One that especially caught my eye is Raya who was unveiled at the event. Whether in America, Asia, Europe and even Africa, I doubt there many urban dwellers who have never heard of the muppets from Sesame Street, I wouldn't be surprised if people in the rural areas know them too.

Raya is a six year old aqua-green girl muppet, and she loves to learn and remembers every fact she reads or hears. Some of it is useful, some not so much. For example she knows that giraffes have seven bones on their necks.

"I make sure to wear my sandals everywhere - espcially to the latrine. Wearing my sandals helps protect me so I can stay clean and healthy," she says in an interview with the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation Water, Sanitation and Hygiene Director, Mr Brian Arbogast.

Having orginal co-productions in Banglsdesh, India and Nigeria, and an extensive history of addressing and meeting the needs of children locally, Sesame Street is primed to harness the appeal of the beloved Muppets to deliver this important conent in meaningful ways.

1 comment:

  1. شرك تسليك مجاري بالقطيف
    الصرف الصحى
    من المشكلات التي يعاني منها معظم المنازل هي انتشار المياه نتيجة عن انسداد المجاري فان هذا الوضع يكون سيء جدا ولا يوفر لهم الراحة ويجعل اصحاب المنازل

    تسليك مجاري بالخبر
    اسعار شركة الاندلس ى متناول الجميع كما توفر الدعم الكامل لدى عملائها

    شركة الصرف الصحى بالدمام
    يشعرون بالقلل ان تنتشر المياه بشكل كبير في المنزل وتأثر بالسلب علي الجدران والبلاط لا نها تعمل علي تشقق الجدران ويمكن تعمل علي العجلة من سقوط المنزل

    شركة الصرف الصحى بالخبر
    مياه المجارى من اخطر الاشياء التى تضر بسلامة المجتمع بشكل عام والاسرة بوجه خاصة لذلك تعمل شركتنا على معالجة مشاكل الصرف الصحى فلا تتردد بالاتصال بنا

    شركة تسليك مجارى بالدمام
    فيجب الحرص علي تسليك المجاري (البيارات ) بشكل مستمر حتي لا يحدث مشاكل لان انتشار المياه الملوثة والرائحة الكريهة قد يأثر علي افراد الاسرة بالإصابة بالأمراض الخطيرة

    شركة شفط بيارات بالدمام
    تحرس شركة الاندلس على الضمان الكامل على سلامة خطوط الصرف وعدم اضافة اى مواد تض بها

    شركة شفط المجارى بالخبر
    كذلك توفر سيارات شفط مياه المجارى بصفة مستمرة على مدار الاربعة وعشرون ساعة احدث المعدات المتطورة والحديثة

    شركة شفط بيارات بالقطيف
    شركة الاندلس شركة تسليك مجارى بالجبيل من افضل الشركات المتخصصة القلائل المتواجده فى مدينة الجبيل كافة الحلول وافضل الاداوت والمعدات
    شركة تسليك مجارى بالجبيل