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Global WASH Cluster
GWC Monthly Newsletter #9
06 / 10 / 2021
Dear colleagues,
Welcome to the ninth edition of the Global WASH Cluster’s (GWC) 2021 Monthly Newsletter! We are pleased to share in this issue upcoming news on Global Handwashing Day, the new Technical Resources on Market-based Programming, the Triple Nexus events, and news from partner organizations including ALNAP, UNICEF, CAWST, PRO-WASH, and others. A key section on WASH and Covid-19 includes news from the Covid-19 Hygiene Hub, as well as other partners.

In addition, key documents from national humanitarian WASH coordination platforms are also featured in the operational update section. Highlights this month from countries feature The Impact of Climate Change on Access to Water for the Most Vulnerable Communities in the West Bank and the South Sudan Humanitarian WASH Needs: September – December 2021.

According to OCHA, half of the 30 countries with an inter-agency humanitarian response plan (HRP) have reported at least double the number of Covid-19 cases, with several reporting more than six times the number (Burundi, Zimbabwe, Mozambique). GHO countries have also recorded 83 percent more deaths in 2021 compared to 2020. In August, HRP countries received a record 33 million doses, which means half of HRP countries do not have enough doses to vaccinate even 5 percent of their population (based on 2 doses).

With Global Handwashing Day approaching (read more below), we would like to engage partners and national humanitarian WASH coordination platforms to increase awareness and understanding about the importance of handwashing with soap as an effective and affordable way to prevent diseases and save lives.

On operational support, the GWC also recently deployed two members of its Field Support Team (FST), 2 members for the current Mozambique WASH response and 2 members for the Haiti Earthquake response to support the cluster with coordination, assessment, and information management expertise for the coming months (read below).

We value showcasing the incredible work National Humanitarian WASH Coordination Platforms and partners are doing around the world, so please send us your photos, stories, and other content to highlight the work of your team or draw attention to issues that matter to you. Read our submission guidelines here. All items can be sent directly for inclusion to the next newsletter by Friday, 22nd October 2021 to
Best regards,
CAST (Cluster Advocacy and Support Team)
© UNICEF/UN0512986/Dejongh
GWC Collaborations and News
Upcoming Global Handwashing Day

October 15 is Global Handwashing Day, a global advocacy day dedicated to increasing awareness and understanding about the importance of handwashing with soap as an effective and affordable way to prevent diseases and save lives. 

This year’s theme, “Our Future is at Hand - Let’s Move Forward Together,” calls on all of society to take collective action as we actively work toward universal hand hygiene.This unprecedented time provides a unique impetus to institutionalize hand hygiene as a fundamental component of health and safety. The learnings from the past year have emphasized the need for collective action to address the historic neglect of hand hygiene investments, policies, and programs once and for all.

As we continue to address the ongoing pandemic and begin to enter a new normal, our future is at hand.

Engage With Us and Share Your Stories!

The CAST would like to remind and encourage WASH partners and coordination platforms to engage through the campaigns and events at the country level - feel free to share any country-level initiative, story related to GHD directly to by the 13th October and we will be happy to publish it across our networks or through Twitter and tag us @WashClusterglob.

A global level event and not to be missed is the launch of The State of the World’s Hand Hygiene Report - 15th of October 2021 at 0900 (EST).

Join sector leaders for the launch of the first State of the World’s Hand Hygiene report and learn how governments are driving efforts to scale up hand hygiene. Register for free for the event: registration link

Inter-Cluster Famine Statement
The Global Food Security, Health, Nutrition, and WASH Clusters call on all humanitarian stakeholders, resource partners and national authorities to take urgent action now to prevent widespread malnutrition, starvation, and death from food crises.

We highly encourage national coordination platforms and partners to share this statement widely among your networks, to better advocate for inter-sectoral response and work actively to prevent millions of people from spiralling into famine. Read the statement here.

Market-Based Programming in WASH: Technical Guidance for Humanitarian Practitioners

Over recent years, humanitarian aid organizations have increasingly used market-based programming (MBP) to deliver WASH in emergencies.  ‘Market-based modalities’ include the distribution of cash and vouchers, which enable recipient households to access the WASH goods and services they need, as well as supporting WASH markets to deliver them at humanitarian standards. This updated and practical guidance introduces concrete steps that can be implemented for MBP in WASH in line with the key steps of the humanitarian program management cycle.

The guide includes links to practical tools, templates, and guides that you can adapt. In addition to the guidance, you can access recordings here in English, French, Spanish, and Arabic of a recent webinar that PRO-WASH co-hosted to launch this guidance. While primarily for humanitarian actors, Resilience Food Security Activities may also find the guidance and webinar recordings of use. 
Access the Resource
WASH Triple Nexus - Post WWW Event: Highlights & Video Recording

On 1 September 2021, the Triple Nexus in WASH – Initiative”, led by the Global WASH Clusters (GWC), Sanitation and Water for all (SWA), UNICEF and the German WASH Network hosted an interactive WASH Triple Nexus webinar. Here you can watch the video recording.


The global initiative aims to strengthen WASH policy makers’ and practitioners’ understanding of the key concepts of the WASH Triple Nexus Operational Framework and their application. Based on case studies from Uganda, Honduras and Burkina Faso, the event helped to demystify the approach and demonstrate effective collaboration to achieve WASH outcomes that promote resilience and sustainable development and, where possible, contribute to social cohesion and peace. Further input from USAID and the German WASH Network fuelled discussion on how to build global support for scaling up the approach. If you have questions, please contact

Operational Updates
The Global WASH Cluster provides Operational Support for coordination platforms in humanitarian emergencies through deployments and remote support. The support is provided by the Field Support Team (FST), a consortium of WASH agencies providing 8 staff (4 x coordinators, 3 x information managers, and 1 x assessment specialist) with the support and oversight of the GWC-Cluster Advocacy and Support Team. 

To access these services national coordinators or information managers can send an email or inquiry to (SWZ-GWC Help Desk). We also remind all that the GWC Coordination Toolkit is our live resource for guidance in all matters for coordination, information management and assessments. 

Field Support Team (FST) Face-to-Face Meeting and Steering Committee of the Field Support Team (FST) Project

Between the 20th and 24th of September 2021, the FST team met in Geneva (and virtually for the members deployed) at the annual face-to-face meeting. One of the meeting’s objectives was to create a team spirit between staff members who are usually deployed to the field and hardly meet each other, and the management team of the project (UNICEF CAST and ACF).

Another objective was to exchange on technical matters linked to humanitarian WASH coordination, especially on how to improve on capacity building of the national platforms, how to progress on accountability and quality ssurance (AQA), and also how to support advocacy, which is one of the seven core coordination functions of coordination. The team also contributed to several strategic sessions around the “Structural Review”, a project aiming at adapting our way of working, and even the FST team structure, in order to serve cluster partners and platforms with more relevance, predictability and impact.

The recommendations produced by this lively and interactive three days’ workshop were passed to the FST Consortium members (UNICEF, ACF, NCA, OXFAM, iMMAP and IMPACT) to be discussed and voted during the second Steering Committee of the project, that closed the week seminar.

Those decisions will make the FST recommendations officially endorsed and will inform the global action plan of the FST project. With 18 deployments (14 in person) since November 2020, the FST project clearly demonstrates the operational role of the Global WASH Cluster, when it comes to supporting National Humanitarian WASH Coordination Platforms. Read more here.

Stories from the Field – Earthquake in Les Cayes, Haiti and FST Deployments (continued)

After the powerful 7.2 magnitude earthquake on the 14th of August, which affected the southwest of Haiti, 650,000 people needed emergency humanitarian assistance. 

In the WASH sector, 500,000 people required both immediate and long-term support to access water supply services. Significant needs include access to safe water for consumption, sanitation services and hygiene promotion. The response around these areas has been implemented as follows:

  • Water for consumption – The latest evaluation show that almost 400,000 people don’t have access to functional drinking water supply infrastructure. Withal, 250,000 people have already been provided with safe water through water trucking, and treatment units and bladders have been installed by DINEPA and partners. Rehabilitation of moderately damaged WASH infrastructure - to re-establish its functionality and the continuity of services – has started.  

  • Sanitation services – The response includes the provision of sanitation services as well. Repairs and rehabilitation of sanitation facilities have been implemented. WASH sector partners plan to scale up access to sanitation facilities and to continue to support repairs of such services.  

  • Hygiene promotion – By the end of September, 20,000 hygiene kits, covering more than 100,000 people, had been distributed by WASH partners. Also, hygiene promotion activities to prevent public health risks, including the spread of infectious and waterborne diseases such as COVID-19, cholera, or malaria, have been undertaken.  

However, more than five weeks into response actions, a number of gaps remain. Fuel shortages constrain the functioning of water treatment units, reducing the production of safe water. Also, the implementation of the sanitation response in IDP sites is still deficient, and this could increase fecal contamination and GBV. Hygiene promotion actions are hampered due to the weakness of the national market, which delays the availability and distribution of hygiene kits, and the outreach of awareness campaigns remains a challenge. More broadly, the current funding situation of the sector is orientated towards emergency response but leaves funding gaps for the repair of damaged water supply systems, which could impact the longer-term recovery. 

Two Field Support Team members (one cluster coordinator and one information manager) were rapidly deployed to assist the national WASH platform at both national and departmental levels (Les Cayes). This 2-month mission aims at supporting the WASH coordination structure led by UNICEF and the DINEPA and that assists more than 73,000 affected people on the ground, essentially internally displaced by the crisis. 

This deployment focused on setting and consolidating the national and departmental coordination structures, with a strong input on capacity building and setting standard tools (e.g. to enhance partners coordination and monitoring sanitation services to IDPs sites). The mission also includes support to preparedness plans in order to anticipate any crises or events that regularly affect the country. Eventually, information management tools were either created or standardized, including an online WASH sitrep, to improve communication, strategic response effectiveness and accountability.

Read more about the Haiti Earthquake Emergency and the WASH Cluster here.

HNO & HRP 2021-2022 - Updated Guidance, Webinars and Upcoming Events

GWC Recent Webinars 

HRP 2021 – 2022 | Guidance Resources 

With the HRP season approaching, we also wanted to share some resources on WASH Operational Response Plans, including guidance on defining WASH response strategic objectives, estimating WASH sector humanitarian caseloads, WASH response prioritization and costing. You can find the links below: 

Resources and Tools from National Humanitarian WASH Coordination Platforms - May 2021:
We encourage all National Humanitarian WASH Coordination Platforms to send their examples, guidance, tools on coordination, information management, assessment and technical guidelines/documents directly to:
Partner Updates
UNICEF WASH - Key Updates and New Resources

The State of the World’s Children 2021

The COVID-19 pandemic has raised huge concerns for the mental health of an entire generation of children and young people and parents and caregivers. But the pandemic may represent only the tip of a mental health iceberg – an iceberg we have ignored for far too long. The data show that more than 13 per cent of adolescents aged 10–19 live with a diagnosed mental disorder as defined by the World Health Organization. This represents 89 million adolescent boys and 77 million adolescent girls. Every year, almost 46,000 children and adolescents between the ages of 10 and 19 end their own lives – about one every eleven minutes.

For the first time in its history, The State of the World’s Children examines mental health, with a special focus on how risk and protective factors in the home, school and community shape mental health outcomes. Against a backdrop of rising awareness of mental health issues, and growing demand for action, the report argues that we now have a unique opportunity to promote good mental health for every child, protect vulnerable children and care for children facing the greatest challenges.

The report demands an urgent investment in child and adolescent mental health across sectors, not just in health. It argues for proven interventions in areas like health, education, and social protection, such as parenting and whole-school programs. And it calls for societies to break the silence surrounding mental health, by addressing stigma, promoting understanding, and taking seriously the experiences of children and young people. Read more here.

Video Briefings: Gender Equality in Preparedness and Humanitarian Action

The main purpose of this series of 10-minute learning modules is to build understanding and share knowledge on gender-related concepts, frameworks and resources of relevance to UNICEF’s work in humanitarian settings.​​​​​​​ The opportunity for this came about with the release of the new UNICEF Core Commitment for Children in Humanitarian Action (CCCs) in late 2020, and the need to promote knowledge, ownership, understanding and application by personnel and partners.​​​​​​​

There are 11 modules and each module is about 10-minutes long and is a stand-alone resource, that can be used separately and in a flexible manner to adapt to different learning needs and audiences. Read more here.

PRO-WASH Updates and Webinars

Market-Based Approaches for National WASH Cluster Response Plans Multiple Dates | Online 

These webinars will build on the recent launch of the updated Market-Based Programming (MBP) in WASH Technical Guidance for Practitioners. They will provide practical guidance and use participatory methods to facilitate and support WASH national coordination teams and key implementing partners to develop market-based approaches as part of the humanitarian response plan 2022. The October 6th webinar will be in English, French, and Spanish and will be for humanitarian practitioners working in Ecuador, Venezuela, Columbia, Honduras, and Haiti. The October 13th webinar will be in English, Arabic, and Portuguese for humanitarian practitioners working in Myanmar, Sudan, Libya, OPT, Bangladesh, Ethiopia, and Mozambique. Register

PRO-WASH Operation and Maintenance of WASH Infrastructure Webinar Series October 19, 2021 | Online

Please join us for the last of our webinars on operations and maintenance of WASH infrastructure. This webinar will take the form of a panel discussion, featuring speakers from the previous webinars. It will explore emerging and controversial issues in WASH provision and programming, including the role of the community, the apportionment of O&M costs, the responsibilities of governments, and the thorny issue of financing. Attendees will have ample opportunity to participate by asking panel members questions and by voting online. French interpretation will be provided. Register

Read the latest full PRO-WASH update here.

CAWST - New E-Learning Modules and Job Aids

We would like to remind all that a set of microlearning tools developed by CAWST was created for the humanitarian sector and the e-learning modules and job aids are finally ready! You can now find them in the CAWST library on the following topics:

Drinking water quality testing
Get tools to help test the quality of drinking water under field conditions. Available now in English, Spanish, French and Arabic.

Drinking water treatment
Get tools to help treat, disinfect and safely handle drinking water in emergency contexts.

Behaviour change
Get tools to help demystify the motivations behind behaviours and approach behaviour change more effectively in WASH interventions.

Get tools to help with fecal sludge and excreta management, including emptying, transport and treatment/disposal. 

We encourage you to forward this email to share with your colleagues as professional development tools, refreshers in foundational skills, or as on-the-job aids. The drinking water quality testing materials are already available in French, Spanish, and Arabic. The translated versions of the remaining materials are coming soon - Look out for the announcements in October and November.

Wash'Em - Training Opportunities in FRENCH
Wash’Em has a new training opportunity in French. This training will again be a combination of self-directed learning and online group learning sessions. It will run between the 25th October and the 26th of November. Read more in French here.

Are you interested in Wash’Em training? Spots are limited, but you can sign up here to get on a waiting list. Contact: or find answers to frequently asked questions.

WASH and Covid-19

Covid-19 Hygiene Hub Updates

As mentioned in the last bulletin, the COVID-19 Hygiene Hub will no longer provide rapid or ongoing technical support to partners beyond September 2021. However, do stay tuned for future learning briefs and a number of case studies.

COVID-19 Hygiene Hub Feedback Survey

The COVID-19 Hygiene Hub would like to thank you all for connecting with us and sharing learning over the last year. We welcome your feedback on our services by completing a short (less than 5 minutes) survey to help us understand more about how our services have been used and applied to COVID-19 prevention programmes. You can access the survey via this link - COVID-19 Hygiene Hub Feedback Survey. We would also appreciate it if you could share the survey with your colleagues who may have used the COVID-19 Hygiene Hub.

Learning briefs & webinars

A recording is available for a webinar hosted by the UK Foreign, Commonwealth & Development office (FCDO)’s COVID-19 Behaviour Change Forum and the COVID-19 Hygiene Hub. This webinar focuses on building trust and resilience to misinformation for vaccine uptake and features presentations from behaviour change specialists and frontline actors in India and Libya.

Please check out our previous learning briefs on hand hygiene promotion, monitoring and evaluation, and disability and inclusion in COVID-19 prevention programmes. Next month we will be publishing a learning brief on coordination and financing of the pandemic response.

Technical resources

We continue updating our collection of over 200 technical resources to support you in your COVID-19 response by giving you access to the relevant evidence and guidance. As a reminder, our summary report on how to integrate COVID-19 vaccine promotion into prevention programmes is now available in English, French, Spanish, and Arabic.

WHO and UNICEF have produced a costing tool for hand hygiene in domestic settings, in collaboration with WASHEconomics, with inputs from a number of partners, including the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, the World Bank and WaterAid. The tool is available on the WHO website here.

If you have a question for the Hygiene Hub, need technical support or would like to share your project, get in touch with us at

Latest WASH & Covid-19 New Updates From Partners

Inter-Cluster Updates
IASC New Resources

IASC Common Monitoring and Evaluation Framework for Mental Health and Psychosocial Support in Emergency Settings: With means of verification (Version 2.0), developed by the Reference Group on Mental Health And Psychosocial Support In Emergency Settings (MHPSS RG)

The purpose of this document is to revise and complement the IASC Common Monitoring and Evaluation Framework for MHPSS in Emergency Settings endorsed in 2017 by the IASC Principals to address the lack of a standard system for data collection and monitoring and evaluation (M&E) and the resulting challenges in demonstrating progress and ensuring quality for MHPSS in humanitarian settings. The revision allows for updated guidance and the inclusion of newly identified qualitative and quantitative data collection tools to measure MHPSS indicators in the Framework, also known as Means of Verification (MOV).
Read more here

UN Common Cash Statement Progress Report - September 2021
This report outlines key progress and challenges under the UN Common Cash Statement (UNCCS) and the vision and priorities ahead. It builds on more than two years of implementation, the UNCCS Q&A and a number of surveys and lessons learned workshops conducted with countries in 2021. While the focus has largely been on implementation in the seven focus countries,1 the UNCCS continues to grow globally, leveraging the experience gained in recent years, building on existing common guidance.
Read more here.

Other recent resources:

Webinar/Event link Date & time Organisation
Regional Workshop WASH in Emergencies
4 – 8 October GWN/GTO
UNC 2021 Water and Health - Science
Policy and Practice Conference
4 – 8 October UNC
GWC Project and/or Activity Costing of.                  
HRPs -
14 October GWC
Global Handwashing Day 15 October GHP
The Climate Charter – A Practical
Guide Session
14 October PHAP
COP26: Water Climate Discussion Series 5, 12 & 19 October COP26
Operation and Maintenance of WASH
Infrastructure Webinar Series
19 October FSN
Regional Workshop WASH in Emergencies
2021 Asia
25 – 29 October GWN/GTO
4th Global WOPs Congress 18 – 29 October UN Habitat
Accountability and inclusion in the
COVID-19 response
2 November PHAP
Seventh EMPHNET Regional Conference
15 & 19 November          EMPHNET

If you wish to contribute, please submit directly to:
New sewers have been sealed with UNICEF and partners support in Al Shuhada’a Neighborhood, Al Hudaydah Governorate, Yemen, in August 2021.
© UNICEF/UN0525833/Gabreez
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