“MANTRA” targets social transformation using water and sanitation as an entry point. The formation of Village Committees were for construction of combined facility of toilets with bathrooms construction, overhead water tank and pipe water supply to all households; introducing the concept of creation of corpus fund, payment for services by the community and putting in place the governance system for maintenance of infrastructure created for water and sanitation.
Activities planning and intervention
The Gram Vikas makes its intervention only when 100% households agree for water and sanitation coverage. Hiring of local youth to provide repair and maintenance service ensures successful implementation of the activity.
Benefits to stakeholders
Gram Vikas has promoted the practice of hygiene and sanitation by overcoming the problem of open defecation, through construction of toilets and bathrooms with 24 hrs water supply through pipeline.
The community has immensely benefited through this interventions in terms of hygiene and sanitation at village level. This has also enhanced the dignity of women who were defecating and bathing in open spaces. The decline in incidence of health problems due to lack of hygiene was endorsed by the community during field visit in all the three villages.
Access to toilets with continuous supply of water, bathing facility contribute to improved personal hygiene, change in attitude and behaviour towards hygiene and sanitation which has started impacting neighbourhood villages.
The management of the water and sanitation facilities created was handed over to community with well developed processes in terms of its maintenance and sustainability. Representation of women in the governance village committees through membership is 10 members.
The beneficiaries including members of the village committee opine that they are quite satisfied with construction of toilets and bathrooms in their households and maintain them well. They have understood the role of hygiene and sanitation and are putting efforts to make these interventions sustainable. In their words main benefit is that the women of the village do not have to defecate on both the sides of village roads and bath in open in unhygienic village water bodies. This has also given them dignity in life. Thirdly, they get 24 hrs water supplies. This has also reduced the incidents of water born diseases like dysentery and diarrhoea.
Elements of Sustainability
The creation of institutional mechanism like village committee (a registered institution) with provision for corpus fund and maintenance charges by the community along with hiring of plumber for maintenance of the infrastructure created ensures sustainability of the interventions.
Ability to Replicate
It is observed that 100% coverage of the households has been done under “MANTRA” in three villages with household numbers ranging from 76 to 148. The intervention is successful across the three villages and therefore do not see any obstacle in its scaling up. However, at locations where demographic profile varies in terms of caste distribution, greater social mobilisation will have to be made for cent percent coverage.