COMMUNITY APPROACHES
to TOTAL SANITATION

Book Title: COMMUNITY APPROACHES to TOTAL SANITATION (Based on case studies from India, Nepal, Sierra Leone and Zambia)

Publication: © United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), New York, 2009

Excecutive Summary:

Community Approaches to Total Sanitation (CATS CATS ) is anumbrella term used by UNICEF sanitation practitioners to encompass a wide range of community-based sanitation programming. CATS share the goal of eliminating open defecation; they are rooted in community demand and leadership, focused on behaviour and social change, and committed to local innovation. The CATS Essential Elements are a framework for action, providing a common foundation for work in the sector while allowing for broad variation in the way programmes are applied and translated locally.

UNICEF works closely with governments and other partners in more than 50 countries around the world to mainstream CATS and bring sanitation programming to scale. The Essential Elements are based on lessons learned from decades of sanitation programming and reflect UNICE F’s Global Strategy for water, sanitation and hygiene (WASASH). Worldwide application of CATS has the potential to bring the Millennium Development Goal sanitation target – to halve, by 2015, the proportion of the population without sustainable access to safe drinking water and basic sanitation – within reach by transforming the global rate of progress in sanitation.

This Field Note discusses the evolution of sanitation programming in UNICE F and the origins of our Community Approaches to Total Sanitation. It examines each of the CATS Essential Elements and explores their implementation through country case studies. The case studies illustrate a range of methods under the CATS umbrella: Community-Led Total Sanitation (CLTSTS) in Sierra Leone and Zambia; School-Led Total Sanitation (SLTSTS) in Nepal; and the Total Sanitation Campaign (TSCTSCTSC) in India. These are only a few of the many community approaches to total sanitation being undertaken around the world that exemplify the CATSEssential Elements.

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