GWC-WASH-NFIs-paper (1).doc

GWC-WASH-NFIs-paper (1).doc - WASH related non-food items A...

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WASH related non-food items A briefing paper Maximising the benefits of the distribution of hygiene items Non-food items (NFI) such as cooking sets, soap, buckets, jerry cans and sanitary towels will often be required during an emergency. They have an important role to play in preventing disease outbreaks and help those affected by conflict or disaster to carry out everyday requirements such as cooking and collecting water. Some items are life saving, such as jerry cans for collecting water, blankets in cold weather or soap for maintaining hygiene. Other items may simply contribute to people’s sense of dignity in difficult circumstances e.g. underwear, razors and toothbrushes. Most NFIs are used for their intended purpose but some may be sold to raise money to pay for other needed items. While people are at liberty to make their own decisions about the use of such items, an important opportunity to enable better health and hygiene may be lost if people are not given sufficient information about the health benefits of the items distributed. The provision of hygiene items by hygiene promoters can also act as an incentive to become involved in Hygiene Promotion activities. Encouraging women, men and children to make the best use of hygiene items is often the remit of hygiene promoters but items are often selected and distributed by relief teams headed by logisticians. It is recommended that Hygiene Promoters and Logisticians work together to ensure an effective and efficient system is put in place . Large-scale distributions may need to rely on the expertise of logisticians but smaller distributions of tools or cleaning materials could be carried out with the help of community mobilisers. Not only is it important that good use is made of hygiene kits but it is also vital that the distributed items do not have a negative effect on other areas of the intervention e.g. empty water bottles may be used for anal cleansing and may cause latrines to fill up very quickly. Disposable nappies and/or sanitary towels for women may also block latrines or be disposed of inappropriately. Chlorine solution and ORS may be harmful if not used correctly. Best practice materials produced through the WASH Cluster HP project, c/o UNICEF 2007 It is critical to involve hygiene promoters in the selection and distribution of hygiene items, especially where items may not be used for their intended purpose Cluster co-ordinators, hygiene promoters, and logisticians must work together to ensure the efficient distribution and maximum impact of NFIs
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The packaging used for hygiene kits can in itself present an additional problem of disposal when items are distributed in large quantities. It may be possible to re- cycle some packaging materials if people have no need for it.
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  • Spring '14
  • Sanitary napkin, Distributor, UNICEF

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