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CIDRZ Awards Bauleni Compound Landlords for Improving Sanitary Conditions in their Housing Units

CIDRZ has awarded 12 landlords for improving their toilets in Bauleni Compound under the organisation’s behavioural change meetings dubbed ‘Indaba Yama Landlords’ (meeting of landlords).

This is under the CIDRZ, in collaboration with the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine project which is aimed at ‘Sanitation Demand: Creating Demand for Sanitation in Peri-urban Areas or SanDem.’

A total of 508 Landlords participated in Bauleni Compound and each of them was asked to make four improvements to their toilets:

  • Initiate the ‘pamodzi’ cleaning rota for the toilets which would involve the participation of all households within a housing unit;
  • Provide an inside lock to ensure privacy in the toilet;
  • Provide an external lock to the toilet to ensure that toilets are kept clean all the times and used responsibly; and
  • Provide a cover pan to reduce the smell.

One of the Landlord recipients being rewarded for taking sanitation seriously on her plot during the prize-giving ceremony in Bauleni Compound.

Meetings were held with landlords to sensitise them on the key issues including the building of improved toilets. Within a period of four weeks, we saw great improvement as some landlords worked on all the four requirements and some went further and bought modern fittings including cisterns, while others even started the process of constructing new toilets. This elated the CIDRZ SanDem project who decided to award the outstanding landlords with various prizes.

The SanDem project is funded by the U.K. Department for International Development (DFID) under the Sanitation and Hygiene Supply for Equity (SHARE) project.

The project is designed to create demand for sanitation in peri-urban areas of Lusaka such as Bauleni Compound through formative research, innovation, and intervention. The aim is to determine how far a state-of-the-art communication approach to behaviour change can enhance demand for and acquisition of improved toilets in urban Zambia.

Simple improvements made to pit latrine toilets

Evidence shows that poor sanitation and exposure to human excreta have been implicated in the transmission of many infectious diseases including diarrhoea, cholera, typhoid, intestinal worms, infectious hepatitis, trachoma among many others.

Globally, diseases related to water and sanitation are one of the major causes of death in children under five years old. About 4 billion cases of diarrhoea occur per year, causing 1.8 million deaths among children under five. Therefore improving sanitation is an effective and sustainable means to reduce the risk of infection,  the severity of infection, and ultimately, morbidity and mortality.

The United Nations Children’s Fund and the World Health Organization report that about 2.5 billion people have inadequate toilets globally, and almost one billion defecate in the open.

In Zambia, out of a population of ≈15 million, 5.6 million have no safe toilets and 2.3 million defecate in the open.