Sustainability initiatives get underway in Ranchi

Ranchi

Even as the district of Ranchi in Jharkhand is preparing for ODF (open defecation free) declaration come November 15, 2018, the district administration has put in place various initiatives to sustain behavior change among the village communities.

Sustainability initiatives

Currently, a 3-month long campaign titled, Swachhata Jagrukta Abhiyan or awareness campaign is being observed across the district.  Further, Rani Mistris have been involved in door-to-door survey of toilet quality and accessibility.  To ensure that people continue to use their toilets, local college interns have been engaged to conduct triggering and awareness sessions.  While special Gram Sabhas are held on the 2nd of every month with sanitation top on the agenda, Swachhata Diwas in observed in all schools on the 19th of every month.

ODF Verification

Verification is being done in a bunch of 50 villages at one time.  For starters, all villages have been asked to conduct surveys to ensure 100% coverage and flag out if any households are left out.  In the meantime, the district administration has completed the first level ODF verification in 100 out of 1363 villages.  While this will be gradually done in all villages, preparations are being made for second verification for these 100 villages that have completed verification.

The month of December will be observed as ‘verification month’ when both the first and second level verification will be completed in all villages. In addition, students of Nehru Yuva Kendra will be engaged to carry out 3rd party verification too.

Geo-tagging

Support of all SHGs and local PRIs has been enlisted for geo-tagging.  So far, geo-tagging has been completed for 1,57,059 toilets out of a total of 2,36,117 (85.02%).  Of the 18 blocks, 4 have completed 90% geo-tagging, 9 have completed more than 80% while the remaining have completed 70%.

Converting dysfunctional to functional

Using CSR and DMFT (District Mineral Foundation Trust) funds, all dysfunctional toilets have been converted to functional toilets.  In addition, all Mukhias and Jal Sahiyas have been instructed to identify dysfunctional toilets if any and send proposals for repairing them.  The process of identifying dysfunctional toilets in schools and Anganwadis has commenced and those found in need of repair will be made functional soon.

Swachhagrahis

Around 370 swachhagrahis have been mobilized and trained on awareness generation and ways to sustain ODF status.  They are provided with incentives to make panchayats ODF.  Such foot soldiers have also been given the task of photo-tagging and toilet construction through JSLPS (Jharkhand State Livelihoods Promotion Society).

Left out of baseline survey

An intensive survey has been conducted to identify households that have been left out of the baseline survey of 2012.  A separate list has been made of such households and arrangements are being made to construct toilets for them in mission mode in November 2018.  In areas that are difficult to approach, community toilets are being made.

IEC Activities

Special coffee mugs with SBM logo are distributed to best performing swachhagrahis and Mukhias.  For inter personal communication and awareness generation, college interns have been engaged.  In addition, plans are in the pipeline for training of media, PRIs and SHGs on sustainability issues including solid and liquid waste management.  An orientation round has already been completed in this regard.

Future plans

The district administration is planning to celebrate an ODF plus fortnight to train people – district officials, PRI members and swachhagrahis on ways to sustain ODF status.  In addition, a month long campaign with be held from 1st to 30th January, 2019 to focus on solid and liquid waste management.  In this regard a specific roll-out plan will be made.

Inputs:  Abhishek Singh, ZSBP, Ranchi
Jharkhand
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