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SLOW UPTAKE OF HANDWASHING PRACTICES WORRIES GSF PARTNERS

GSF partners in Malawi have expressed concern over the slow uptake of hand washing practices after latrine use among Muslim communities in Nkhota kota district.

Presenting a progress report at this year’s GSF Malawi third quarterly review meeting in Blantyre, a representative of the Hygiene Village Project, a GSF sub-grantee based in Nkhotakota, said a lot of people in Muslim communities in the district considered their contact with water during anal cleansing after latrine use as adequate.

Following a lengthy discussion and a testimony from Concern Universal, a Balaka based sub-grantee, participants recommended that Hygiene Village Project engage religious leaders, especially of the Islamic faith, and take them through the reasoning behind hand-washing after latrine use.

It was reasoned that the high esteem with which religious leaders are held in communities, engaging them would help accelerate the much needed change among their faithful.

The week long quarterly review meeting was jointly held with the Department For International Development, DFID, with the view of allowing participants to reflect on progress made on several fronts in sanitation.

The meeting, attended by technical and financial officers from various sub-grantees also sought to allow participants acquire new knowledge with regard to strategies for accelerating the attainment of results in sanitation work.

Sub-grantees under both the GSF and DFID were among other things taken through sessions in Sanitation Marketing and Entrepreneurship.
The next quarterly review meeting for the GSF in Malawi is due for December, 2013.

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