Thursday, November 29, 2012

Sanitation and Water for All Partnership - Worthy of Our Active Support

Sanitation and Water for All Partnership Meeting
There is no political leader anywhere in the developed or developing world who does not want to provide safe drinking water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH) for each of his/her constituents. However, those same political leaders are often unable to increase their support for WASH in the face of so many equally important, competing development priorities (energy, roads, education). The way across this divide is political will: how can we make it possible for political leaders to do what they already want to do? How can we strengthen political will, making it possible for those political leaders to commit to 100% coverage of safe drinking water and sanitation in their countries, provinces, neighborhoods?

One organization that tackles this political challenge head-on is the Sanitation and Water for All Partnership (SWA). I recently attended SWA’s partnership meeting in Johannesburg, South Africa. The meeting was less about the technicalities of sanitation and water programs, and more about politics, governance, advocacy, and Social Contract 101. I emerged from those few days with heightened optimism about the future of SWA and a more clear vision of the path toward universal coverage of sanitation and water.

Under the aegis of SWA, developed and developing countries made 402 public commitments to sanitation and water challenges in their countries. SWA offers a powerful global platform from which to hold these countries accountable for these commitments. More importantly, SWA must track progress made country by country, and province by province, toward each of these commitments. Consistent, in-country progress, as highlighted in this recent blog, is far more important than any global or even regional actions. The international donor community can help, and WASH Advocates is pleased that the United States has joined SWA and made its own commitments.

There remain 2.5 billion people without sanitation, and almost one billion people without safe drinking water. We will achieve universal coverage in a tight timeframe not through simply drilling more wells or building more latrines, but by increasing the amount and effectiveness of political will for sanitation and water country by country. This heightened political will means bigger and smarter budgets for WASH, more emphasis on sanitation and what is really killing children (diarrheal disease), and financial resources that get to where they are needed transparently and efficiently. SWA with all of its imperfections and growing pains is the only platform with the mandate and ability to reach Finance Ministers (and even Prime Ministers and Heads of State) with sanitation and water messaging. SWA deserves not just our interest but our active engagement if we are serious when we claim to be working toward aid independence and the ultimate goal: universal coverage of sanitation and water.

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Technology development of a low-cost chlorine doser for shared water points in urban Bangladesh

Request for Expressions Of Interest

Technology development of a low-cost chlorine doser for shared water points in urban Bangladesh

Stanford University and the International Center for Diarrheal Diseases Research, Bangladesh have partnered to develop a sustainable and cost-effective solution to improving water quality in low-income areas of Dhaka, Bangladesh. The research team has developed a low-cost prototype that doses liquid chlorine and does not rely on electricity or moving parts. The device aims to provide an appropriate dose of chlorine proportional to the flow through manual handpumps and pipes carrying drinking water. The current design employs handpump suction to trigger chlorine dosing. The project is currently seeking a technical design or engineering consulting expert or firm to improve upon the prototype, by increasing dosing accuracy, lowering manufacturing costs, increasing product lifespan, and contributing to strategies for production and scale up. The project may require travel to Dhaka to understand the current state of the technology, local flow and pressure conditions, and other environmental and social factors that would affect device?s design. The main objective will be to develop a product that can accurately and consistently dose liquid chlorine within a safe and effective range at shared water points in Dhaka with a production cost below $20USD.

Interested parties should submit a cover letter including a summary of relevant qualifications, as well as send CVs of the proposed project team. Ideal applicants would have experience with technology development for low-income settings, international work experience, engineering and product design skills, understanding of design for future scale-up, and be familiar with fluid dynamics. Letters of interest should be emailed to no later than Nov. 5th, 2012 to and Additional information regarding the current prototype and proposal guidelines will be made available to selected applicants.  

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Nov. 12 deadline for STARS Foundation Impact Awards

November 12 is coming up fast! I am reposting this per the request of the STARS Foundation. Please do consider applying.



Applications are now open for the 2013 STARS Impact Awards.

We are pleased to announce the launch of the 2013 STARS Impact Awards recognising outstanding organisations
that achieve excellence in the provision of services to disadvantaged children.

Organisations working with children in Africa, the Middle East, Asia or Pacific are invited to apply.

There are 16 Awards in total that will be split across two regions - Africa-Middle East and Asia-Pacific. In addition to our existing categories of Health, Education and Protection, we are very pleased to announce the launch of our new category Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH).

The main Impact Award will be given to four winners per region (one in each category) that will each receive $100,000 of unrestricted funding together with a bespoke package of consultancy, PR and media support. Each organisation will also benefit from the opportunity to work together with STARS for up to one year to promote their plans to other donors and seek to raise additional funding.

In addition to these main Impact Awards, smaller Awards of different sizes will be made at the discretion of STARS’ Board of Trustees.

To find information regarding the application process, the eligibility criteria and to apply online, please visit

The closing date for applications is 1pm GMT Monday 12 November 2012.

Please spread the word to eligible organisations by forwarding this email.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012 - New Funding Opportunity

A new fundraising opportunity, via our friends at

Editor’s Note: The STARS Foundation is a London-based organization that provides grants to nonprofits working with disadvantaged children. The Foundation is now accepting applications for their 2013 Impact Awards, including their new WASH category, which recognizes the impact that WASH solutions can have on improving the well-being of children.     

The STARS Foundation is pleased to announce the launch of the 2013 STARS Impact Awards recognizing outstanding organizations that achieve excellence in the provision of services to disadvantaged children.
In response to a growing demand for flexible funding, STARS invites NGOs to apply for up to 16 Impact Awards and, for the first time, has added a new category — Water, Sanitation, and Hygiene (WASH) — due to the impact that improvements in this area can have on child survival and well-being.

Organizations working with children in Africa, the Middle East, Asia, or the Pacific are invited to apply.
The main Impact Award will be given to four winners per region — one in each of the following categories: Health, Education, Protection, and WASH. Winners will each receive $100,000 of unrestricted funding together with a bespoke package of consultancy, PR, and media support. Each organization will also benefit from the opportunity to work together with STARS for up to one year to promote their plans to other donors and seek to raise additional funding.

In addition to these main Impact Awards, smaller awards of different sizes will be made at the discretion of STARS’ board of trustees.

To find information regarding the application process, the eligibility criteria, and to apply online, please visit the Foundation's web site.

The closing date for applications is 1PM GMT Monday, November 12, 2012.

Friday, August 24, 2012

World Water Week - The Politics of Water: Strengthening National Advocacy for WASH

For those of you who will be in Stockholm for World Water Week, please join us at our session on:

The session will take place on Thursday, August 30, from 12h45 - 13h45 in Room K24.

Event Description
In-country advocacy throughout the developing world is vital to addressing the global water and sanitation (WASH) challenge. This session convenes experienced and new WASH advocates to discuss how they are positively influencing public policies and increasing WASH budgets in their countries.

The session will begin promptly at 12:45.

Our speakers are:
  • Diana Betancourt, Water For People (
    The impact of advocacy at municipal and national levels in Honduras and beyond.
  • Yiga Baker, ANEW (
    3-4 mini case studies about how WASH civil society networks have influenced public policy and budgets for WASH throughout Africa.
  • John Oldfield, WASH Advocates (, speaker and moderator):
    Best and emerging practices for advocacy in WASH and other sectors.
After brief remarks (seven minutes) from each of the speakers, we will have 30 minutes left in our sixty minute session to engage with the audience. We are asking the audience to prepare in advance for this session, and during the session offer brief remarks on:
  • What WASH advocacy successes and/or failures have you had in your country?
  • Of those successes and failures, what do you think might work (or not) in other parts of the world?
  • What do you hope to accomplish in the next months/years in your country for advocacy for WASH?
Hope to see you all there! Send me a note if you need additional information please.

Friday, August 10, 2012

WSSCC Announces New Executive Director

This is a big deal - please welcome Chris Williams as the new head of WSSCC:

Mr Chris Williams, a development practitioner with over twenty-five years of experience in international organizations in Africa, Asia and the Americas and with training in economics and sociology, will take up office as the next Executive Director of the Water Supply and Sanitation Collaborative Council (WSSCC) in October 2012.

Professor Anna Tibaijuka, Chair of WSSCC, welcomed Mr Williams, saying “The issues of sanitation and hygiene that WSSCC deals with are crucial to improving health and development. We need strong global leadership and bold ambitions to expand the good work that is already being done. I am confident that Mr Williams will be able to deliver in both these areas.”

Speaking of his new challenge, Mr Williams said, “I am delighted to have been appointed to this post. For me, sanitation is a strategic entry point for social and economic development. Targeted investments channelled through national coalitions will enable large numbers of people to improve their living and working conditions. I am particularly interested in working with social movements, private companies, and government to identify ways to align efforts to achieve better sanitation and hygiene.  I’m also keen to see how we can attract more support for the Global Sanitation Fund, so that it can leverage additional resources and finance innovative work in even more countries.”

Mr Williams is moving to WSSCC from UN-Habitat where he held senior posts in global fund management, advocacy, fund raising and policy research, and worked on programmes to upgrade water, sanitation and shelter in settlements. He collaborated with Professor Tibaijuka, who was the Executive Director of UN-Habitat during part of his time there.  Prior to UN-Habitat, Mr Williams worked in Africa and the United States promoting community economic development. His work with homeless shelters, community organizations, financial intermediaries, and community lending institutions gave him exposure to private, civil and public sectors. He has studied economics, public policy and sociology, and holds a Ph.D. from the Graduate Faculty of the New School for Social Research.

WSSCC has a small Secretariat in Geneva, where Mr Williams will be based.  Mr Williams succeeds Mr Jon Lane, who finished as WSSCC’s Executive Director on 3 August. Ms Amanda Marlin, WSSCC’s Programme Manager for Advocacy and Communications, will be providing interim leadership to WSSCC until Mr Williams takes up office.

Monday, July 2, 2012

Water, Sanitation and Hygiene funding offered through AusAID

Hi nonprofit friends around the world,

I would like to make you aware of a funding opportunity specifically for Water, Sanitation and Hygiene offered through AusAID - the Civil Society Water, Sanitation, and Hygiene Fund:
DEADLINE: August 24, 2012
(See target countries listed further below.)

The AusAID Civil Society Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) Fund is an AUD$97 million fund that will run from July 2012 until February 2017 and support civil society organisations (CSOs) to deliver WASH programs in Africa, Asia and the Pacific. Following on from the Water and Sanitation Initiative (WSI) Civil Society WASH Fund, completed in March 2012, the new fund forms a part of a suite of activities under the new phase of global and cross-regional programs in WASH managed by the Infrastructure and Water Policy Section (IWP) in AusAID.

These grants are not limited to Australian organizations: For non-Australian civil society and non-for-profit organizations, there are additional steps in the process. If an organization is not accredited by AusAID or has not previously received AusAID funding, the organization will be asked to provide other documents to help AusAID assess the organization’s management capacity, systems and operations.

List of countries captured within the scope of program:

Southern Africa: Angola, Botswana, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa, Swaziland, Zambia, Zimbabwe

East Africa: DR Congo, Tanzania

South Asia: Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Nepal, Pakistan, Sri Lanka

South-East Asia: Burma/Myanmar, Cambodia, Indonesia, Lao, PDR, Philippines, Timor, Leste, Vietnam

Pacific: Fiji, Kiribati, Micronesia, Nauru, Papua New Guinea, Solomon Islands, Tonga, Tuvalu, Vanuatu

Specific organizational and activity criteria are listed on the Fund Guidelines document which can be found at the AusAID Fund website and is also attached to this email.

Timeframes and resources (per the AusAID Site):

The deadline for submission of proposals is Friday 24 August 2012 at 14:00 hours Australian Eastern Standard Time (GMT + 10). The outcomes of the call of proposals will be advised in October 2012 with the inception phase expected to begin in November 2012.

AusAID would prefer electronic submissions in PDF format. Submissions must be emailed to WASHFund  (at) AusAID (dot) gov (dot) au. If necessary hard copies should be provided to:

Tender Box, Ground Floor, AusAID
255 London Circuit
Canberra ACT 2601

*** This could be a great opportunity for WASH organizations doing vital work around the world to receive funding. The August 24 application deadline is fast approaching. ***
More details here:

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Water and Security / National Intelligence Council

Hope you can all join me at this event about water/security/national intelligence. In Washington DC, but will be webcast:

Global Water Security:
The Intelligence Community Assessment
While wars over water are unlikely within the next 10 years, water challenges – shortages, poor water quality, floods – will likely increase the risk of instability and state failure, exacerbate regional tensions, and distract countries from working with the United States on important policy objectives, according to an assessment prepared by the U.S. Intelligence Community (IC). The recently-released Intelligence Community Assessment (ICA) “Global Water Security,” was prepared by the National Intelligence Council (NIC) of the Office of the Director of National Intelligence at the request of the Department of State. The ICA also notes that, as a consequence of water challenges globally, the demand for U.S. assistance and expertise will increase providing the U.S. with opportunities for leadership and forestalling other actors from achieving the same influence at U.S. expense.

Wednesday, May 9, 2012
3:00 to 5:00 p.m.
Woodrow Wilson Center, 6th Floor, Joseph H. and Claire Flom Auditorium

The National Conversation at the Woodrow Wilson Center series provides a safe political space for deep dialogue and informed discussion of the most significant problems and challenges facing the nation and the world. This session is done in collaboration with the Department of State and the National Intelligence Council.

To RSVP acceptance or to receive further information, send an email to Lauren Herzer at
Lauren (dot) herzer (at) wilsoncenter (dot) org. Please provide your name and professional affiliation.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

US Government Joins Global Partnership Aimed at Universal Coverage of Safe Drinking Water and Sanitation

Please circulate widely to others in the media! Thank you.

US Government Joins Global Partnership Aimed at Universal Coverage of Safe Drinking Water and Sanitation

April 25, 2012
John Oldfield
WASH Advocates
joldfield (at) WASHadvocates (dot) org

Washington DC - “Forty years ago today, Apollo 16 landed on the moon . . . by anyone's standards it was a triumph of science, technology and political will. I remember so many of us thinking that if humankind can do this, what could humankind NOT accomplish?” UNICEF Executive Director Anthony Lake continued at last Friday’s Sanitation and Water for All High Level Meeting: “ . . . and yet today, over 1.1 billion people still practice open defecation because they don't have access to the most basic sanitation facilities . . . If two generations ago we could land men on the moon, we can and must also afford people here on earth two of their most basic human rights - safe water and basic sanitation - because until we do, development progress will falter."

On Friday, April 20, 2012, in Washington DC, the United States formally joined the Sanitation and Water for All Partnership (SWA) during its biennial High Level Meeting. WASH Advocates applauds this important step toward 100 percent coverage of safe drinking water and sanitation throughout the developing world.

"The United States Government considers sanitation and water and our related partnering activities to be a critical component of our overall international development assistance effort," US Agency for International Development (USAID) Administrator Raj Shah said in making the announcement. "We look forward to maximizing the potential of this partnership, which brings together such a range of tools, experience, and approaches. Working together, we can not only reach full coverage, but we can also do it in the most effective, efficient, and collaborative way."

This announcement comes on the heels of World Water Day, March 22, 2012, when US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton launched the US Water Partnership to “help answer [the] call for leadership and to expand the impact of America’s work on water.” The US Water Partnership “brings together a diverse range of partners from the private sector, the philanthropic community, the NGOs, academics, experts, and government. This approach will help catalyze new opportunities for cooperation.”

“Sustainable development is about much more than water and sanitation, but never about less. By joining the Sanitation and Water for All Partnership, USAID sends two strong signals: the US will enhance its leadership in the global safe drinking water and sanitation sector, and US assistance toward such efforts around the world will be more catalytic, sustainable, and closely aligned with the priorities of both developing countries and other donor countries,” says John Oldfield, CEO of WASH Advocates.

Most importantly, the Sanitation and Water for All High Level Meeting on April 20 featured developing country governments making stronger commitments to solve the safe drinking water challenge in their own countries, including Kenya, Nigeria, Burkina Faso, and Benin.

Notable participants at the April 20 Sanitation and Water for All meeting included former President of Ghana John Kufuor, USAID Administrator Raj Shah, Executive Director of UNICEF Anthony Lake, and His Royal Highness Willem-Alexander, The Prince of Orange.


About WASH Advocates
WASH Advocates is a nonprofit advocacy effort in Washington DC entirely dedicated to helping solve the global safe drinking water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH) challenge. Our mission is to increase awareness of the global WASH challenge and solutions, and to increase the amount and effectiveness of resources devoted to solving the problem around the developing world. Please visit our website at

About SWA
Sanitation and Water for All is a global partnership aimed at achieving universal and sustainable access to sanitation and drinking-water for all, by firmly placing sanitation and water on the global agenda with an immediate focus on achieving the Millennium Development Goals in the most off-track countries. More information is available at