View this email in your browser
Global WASH Cluster
GWC Monthly Newsletter #2
01 / 03 / 2021
Dear colleagues,
Welcome to the second edition of the GWC 2021 Monthly Newsletter! We are pleased to share in this issue the updates from the Accountability and Quality Assurance (AQA) Initiative, new members to the GWC, and other news from other partner organizations including ICRC, The Solar Hub, UNHCR, IOM, and the Global Task Force on Cholera Control (GTFCC). 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, response plans, and infographics from national humanitarian WASH coordination platforms are also featured in the operational update section. Highlights this week from countries feature the Somalia WASH cluster Regional Supply Hub Approach and the Palestine WASH Cluster Advocacy Brief on Critical access to water during COVID-19 endangered by a rise in demolitions in the West Bank: The case of Masafer Yatta, 15 February 2021.

According to the final Global Humanitarian Response Plan report, more than 82 million COVID-19 cases and 1.8 million deaths were recorded in less than one year (March-December 2020). In that timeframe, out of the global COVID-19 totals, 30 percent of COVID-19 cases and 39 percent deaths were recorded in GHRP countries. The Global WASH Cluster remains heavily engaged in the 2021 HNO/HRP process and in providing operational support on assessment, coordination, and information management to national WASH humanitarian coordination platforms through the GWC Field Support Team. For any query, the FST can be contacted through their dedicated Helpdesk:

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, 25th March 2021 to

We also would like to remind all that the Global WASH Cluster communicates and relays partner information on Twitter and has just launched a new Linkedin group to connect WASH cluster/sector professionals and advertise new vacancies related to WASH coordination / WASH in emergencies.

Best regards,

CAST (Cluster Advocacy and Support Team)
photo credits: © UNICEF/UN0376829/Esiebo
GWC Collaborations and News
GWC Membership Update
We would like to wish a warm welcome to the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, Alight and Global Communities as new members of the Global WASH Cluster!

The Global WASH Cluster operates on the principles of coordinated partnership, promoting a needs-based rather than capacity-driven response. This refocuses humanitarian response on affected populations, rather than on the organisations themselves. The Global WASH Cluster is open to actors working in emergency WASH from the UN Agencies, international humanitarian organizations, National Civil Agencies, International Federation of the Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies.

The membership is categorized with the following levels of involvement (see membership categories here):

1. Full members: envisioned to have voting rights and play an active role in determining the direction and role of the cluster and overseeing cluster responsibilities
2. Associate members (e.g. research institutes)
3. Standing observers (e.g. donors)
4. Adhoc/Special invitees (e.g. Governments, other clusters whether global or country level)

To apply for GWC membership, please fill the application form & membership letter, and share it with the Global WASH Cluster CAST.

Accountability and Quality Assurance Initiative Update
In the first phase, the initiative developed the approach and a guidance note and a modular analytical framework have been produced (available here). Strategic operational support was provided throughout this first phase. The next phase should focus on piloting, testing, adapting, and supporting the adoption of the guidance and tools developed, engaging with national WASH coordination platforms.
We are currently seeking additional funding to implement the second phase as described in the proposal form submitted to donors. We have to temporarily suspend the implementation of the second phase until we can mobilize additional funds. In the meantime, and given that this initiative has been ranked as a high-priority initiative, CAST, based on its current capacity, will continue to implement activities that are essential to deploy the AQA initiative in countries. Thank you for your continuous support of this initiative and stay tuned!
Scaling up and Localizing Humanitarian WASH Trainings
IHE in collaboration with the humanitarian WASH actors carried out a feasibility study to define the best approach to scale up and localize humanitarian WASH trainings at postgraduate level, based on the Graduate Professional Diploma Programme. Three models were discussed: a central model based on the Graduate Sanitation Graduate School experience, a model with stronger leadership at the regional level, and a model based on the priority needs in fragile countries. Results are found here
The Graduate Professional Diploma Programme will start on 2nd May 2020. Applicants can still register here.
Faecal Sludge Management - Technical Working Group Update
The TWIG has recently developed a summary of conclusions from the FSM in Emergencies Gap Survey - see the results here - Contact
Sixth International Faecal Sludge Management Conference, May 31-June 3, 2021 - FSM6 will be held online, and will draw experience from Asia to address the demands and challenges of the sanitation sector, while also highlighting best practice and lessons learned from around the globe. This conference will focus on practical solutions to sustainably manage the whole sanitation service chain, covering the toilet, containment, emptying, transport, treatment and reuse, as an essential component of city-wide urban sanitation services.
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 to (SWZ-GWC Help Desk). 
2020 Core Function Review of National WASH Humanitarian Coordination Platforms
The review has been built around the Inter-Agency Standing Committee (IASC) 6 +1 Core Functions (CF) with the GWC Minimum Requirements indicators (MRiS) developed by the GWC. Overall the diagnostic was conducted with 30 coordination platforms. The results of these discussions have been used by CAST and the FST to plan operational support priorities for the short term and for 2021. The CF review results also provided the country coordination team with insight into the strengths and weaknesses of their coordination platform. Note that each platform participating in the core function desk review has already received detailed country-specific feedback based on the review.

Download the report here.
HPC 2021 Review
On behalf of the Humanitarian Programme Cycle (HPC) Steering Group, OCHA is coordinating the Multi -Partner Review (MPR) of the 2021 HPC, which will be used to inform updates in advance of the 2022 cycle, as well as country support and capacity-building programmes. 

We encourage coordinators and information managers to take this opportunity to provide confidential feedback and suggestions by completing the survey and to pass the sharable survey link ( onto other organizations and individuals with whom you work, notably cluster member organizations.  This is an important opportunity for feed actors to feed into the discussions and decisions which directly affect the HPC. 
The contact person for this work is Kimberly Lietz ( in OCHA Geneva.
Stories from the Field - Somalia WASH Cluster
Regional Supply Hub approach: Success in Strengthened WASH Preparedness and Response in Somalia

Somalia faces multi-layered crises both natural and man-made: floods and cholera outbreaks compounded with conflict that usually trigger displacement and with Covid-19 pandemic overstretched WASH partners’ preparedness and response capacity more than ever. The already vulnerable communities face a daily struggle on how to remain prepared and quickly respond to these multiple emergencies. In 2013, the WASH cluster with the support of the UNICEF Somalia WASH section coined the idea of pre-positioning of essential WASH supplies in each region of Somalia as part of WASH cluster contingency plans to quickly respond to major crises in Somalia.  Nine (9) strategic warehouses (Regional Supply Hubs (RSH)) located in 10 urban centers across Somalia were established to pre-stock hygiene supplies. These warehouses are strategically placed in floods and cholera-prone areas and have the storage capacity to stock over 120k supplies to support about 720k people in 3 months period. Read more here.
Resources and Tools from National Humanitarian WASH Coordination Platforms - January 2021:
We encourage all National Cluster 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

Water Sanitation and Hygiene Pages Launched on
We are very excited to announce that has a new landing page on Water Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) with a series of sub-pages.This is part of the continuing Digital Transformation work on the global website, specifically the migration and streamlining of content from the old website to the new Drupal platform:

End of Year Report on Hand Hygiene For All (HH4A)
The Hand Hygiene for All Initiative (HH4A) sets out to accelerate progress towards hand hygiene for all by 2030 and supporting the most vulnerable communities to protect their health, including against COVID-19. Launched in June 2020, it is jointly led by UNICEF & WHO in partnership with international partners, national governments, public and private sectors, and civil society, and covers multiple settings.
Hand hygiene improvements have come a long way in the first six months since the HH4A initiative was launched. Read the highlights from the partnership in this succinct report.

Defeating Cholera in Haiti: Chronicle of a 10 years fight against Cholera and lessons from the implementation of the alert-response strategy. This document has been prepared to share the 10-year experience, from 2010 to 2020, that UNICEF staff and their partners have accumulated in fighting cholera in Haiti. This guidance document has the objective of providing WASH, Health, Communication for Development and Emergency sectors staff with insights and tools in dealing with a wide-scale cholera epidemic. Download

WASH in Schools (WinS) Distance-Learning Course which will start on March 15th, 2021.The Distance Learning Course is designed by the Center for Global Safe WASH at Emory University in collaboration with UNICEF to assist program managers, implementers, and policymakers in executing and sustaining WinS programs in partnership with local, sub-national, and national stakeholders. For more details about the course and where to register, pls see the attached flyer or access the website here.

The Solar Hub
The Global Solar and Water Initiative, together with Water Mission and UNICEF, have developed a website which aims to be a one-stop shop for all of your solar powered water system needs – from key references on solar to information on various courses, in addition to FAQs, forum function and a Helpdesk. The site is available in English, French and Spanish, with Arabic under development.

A new webinar on Specific Considerations and Limitations of Solar Powered Water Systems in Humanitarian Contexts which is the third in the four-part series will discuss the design aspects of SPWS along with practical limitations (with presentations from Engineers Without Borders-USA, Oxfam and IOM UN Migration).

When: 3rd March, Wednesday at 11:00 am CET 
Register here

The four-part series, “Capacity Building and Learning on Solar Powered Water Systems” is organized jointly by the Global Solar and Water Initiative with funding from USAID’s Bureau for Humanitarian Assistance (BHA) and Energypedia. This series will focus on solar-powered water systems to raise awareness and to build the technical capacity of humanitarian WASH actors and other development organizations.

In their aim to support the quality mainstreaming of solar water pumping solutions worldwide, the Global Solar and Water Initiative team at IOM and OXFAM is releasing a new video containing 5 key lessons learnt to ensure quality Operation and Maintenance of solar pumping schemes.
Feel free to visit as well other resources made available in our new webpage put together in collaboration with UNICEF and Water Missions.

ICRC - Water and Habitat Strategy 2020-2023
The ICRC Water and Habitat Unit’s operational environment is changing rapidly: conflicts are lasting longer, crises are affecting urban areas more and more, long-term systemic solutions are increasingly needed, and global trends like climate change and digitalization cannot be ignored. The ICRC needs to step up its response to emerging needs and adapt the type, size, and extent of the solutions it brings. 

This strategy shows how the ICRC Water and Habitat Unit is guided by the ICRC Strategy 2019–2022 and the ICRC Assistance Policy and sketches out the main ways in which it could further develop its work in the future to influence debates affecting their fields of work and, more importantly, to design and implement high-quality programs that respond to the needs of people affected by armed conflict and other situations of violence.

The document sets out three main strategic objectives:
(1) maintain and advocate for emergency preparedness and response capacities;
(2) promote a flexible, systemic and sustainable approach that engages with people affected by crisis to meet their long-term needs; and
(3) continue to develop expertise in key areas while influencing the debate and policies in the operational space. 

Reaching these objectives will require three enabling factors: (a) staff development and diversity, (b) the digital and information landscape and (c) partnering capacity.

Download the Water and Habitat Strategy 2020-2023 here 
(available in English, French, and soon in Spanish).

IECAH and FLASH - Humanitarian WASH Specialization Course
The WATER, SANITATION, AND HYGIENE IN HUMANITARIAN ACTION (Emergency Response-WASH-Online/ER-WASH-O) specialization course aims to provide a specialized, practical, up-to-date and completely virtual training offer. It is aimed for professionals working in the field or those with a special interest in specializing in the field of water, sanitation and hygiene in humanitarian action.

It is available in English and Spanish - Read more here (ENG/SP)
UNHCR - Water Supply Development and Solar Water Pumping Videos
UNHCR has been working to produce short technical videos on a variety of topics related to water supply development and solar water pumping. Check out or the dedicated youtube channel for a few of these:
IOM - Approaches to deliver IOM WASH in emergencies
The integration of approaches, programming, technical operations and cross-cutting themes in water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) is complex, particularly in emergencies when there are multiple priorities and actors. IOM delivers WASH services that bring together various dimensions of IOM’s work. Check out IOM's new video here.
GTFCC- New Cholera App
As part of the effective implementation of the Ending Cholera: A Global Roadmap to 2030, the GTFCC developed a phone-based application containing technical information and practical documents to provide clear guidance and up-to-date information for early detection, monitoring and efficient response to cholera outbreaks. The application is designed for public health professionals from all sectors working in cholera control. The app is designed to be used offline to accommodate those working in the most remote areas. Read more here.
The Period Posse - New Webinar Series on MHM

This monthly interactive webinar series brings together experts in menstrual health and hygiene from across research, policy and practice to discuss key emerging issues.

Upcoming: Menstrual Disorders: A Focus on Endometriosis
Thursday, March 18th, 2021 | 8am EST

Join the webinar mailing list here

WASH and Covid-19

Covid-19 Hygiene Hub Updates
In this second issue of 2021, we wanted to highlight that we are in the process of developing a new section of our website to showcase the breadth and diversity of the in-depth technical assistance the Hygiene Hub can provide to you - so watch this space. In the meantime, please contact us at to discuss how we may tailor our support to your needs.

We have also added a filter function to the case study page to help you view the collection by country and topic. This month, we have a new case study for you in which Amref Health Africa share how they used a phone-based learning platform to train Community Health Volunteers in Kenya

As a reminder, we have now moved to a monthly schedule, so you can expect our news bulletin in the last week of each month. All previous news bulletins are available here. As always, if you have a question for the Hygiene Hub or would like to share your project, we encourage you to contact us at

Technical resources
Our growing collection of technical resources continues to bring together the latest evidence and guidance to support you in your COVID-19 response.

In the coming weeks, we will have two key resources for you:
  • A summary report on integrating vaccine promotion into COVID-19 prevention work; and
  • A detailed learning brief on disability and inclusion, which synthesises lessons learnt from practitioners around the world during the pandemic.

In the meantime, please check out our summary reports on longer-term, sustainable programming and economics of hygiene programmes, which provide useful insights to help you adapt your hygiene programmes as the pandemic continues and vaccine rollout gains traction. 

All of our technical resources continue to be available in English, French, Spanish, and Arabic. If you have requests or ideas for future resources, please email us at

Find the latest bulletin and follow‌ ‌the HH‌ ‌on‌ ‌‌TwitterFacebook ‌and‌ ‌keep‌ ‌an‌ ‌eye‌ ‌on‌ ‌our‌ ‌‌website ‌for‌ ‌regular‌ ‌updates‌ ‌from‌ ‌us.‌ ‌If‌ ‌you‌ ‌have‌ ‌ any‌ ‌technical‌ ‌questions,‌ ‌please‌ ‌email‌ ‌us‌ ‌your‌ ‌question‌ ‌at‌ ‌ or visit

Save the Children - WASH & Covid-19 Online Courses and New Report
The below e-learning courses are now available for external organizations on It takes approximately 2 hrs for each course from start to finish.

WASH in Schools in the COVID-19 Context
The aim of this course is to provide the target audience with an understanding of the role water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH) can have in schools in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic. It aims to provide necessary information and tools to ensure WASH-related services and procedures are available in schools so as to limit transmission. Access here.

WASH and IPC in Health Care Facilities in the Covid-19 Context
The aim of this course is to provide the target audience with the knowledge of the role of water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) in infection, prevention, and control (IPC) in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic. Access here.

The Hidden Impact of Covid-19 on Children in Urban Contexts
'The Hidden Impact of COVID-19 on Children in Urban Contexts' summarizes the key findings of the impact of COVID-19 on children in urban contexts. They include:

  • 70% of urban respondents reported losing more than half their income, compared to 65% of rural respondents.
  • 44% of urban households reported being in a food security ‘crisis’, compared to 27% for rural areas
  • 39% of urban respondents reported having difficulty paying for rent compared to 6% in rural areas.
Download the report
RCCE Collective Service - latest 
We remind partners and national WASH humanitarian coordination platforms that the Risk Communication and Community Engagement Collective Service is a collaborative partnership between the IFRC, UNICEF, WHO, with support from GOARN and key stakeholders from the public health and humanitarian sectors. The aims of the collective service are to strengthen RCCE coordination and practice, providing support at national, regional and global levels to adopt community-centered approaches in response to COVID-19 and beyond. 

You can learn more about the Collective Service here.
Access the latest news, 23rd February from the Collective Service here.
USAID Water and Development Technical Series and Briefs
This update has links to recent COVID-19 reports added to, an upcoming panel discussion, a bibliography on the use of tippy taps in humanitarian situations and recently published studies on the Supertowel and other topics. Read more and explore the comprehenisive WASH library here.

Latest WASH & Covid-19 New Updates From Partners

  • COVID-19 Strategic Preparedness and Response Plan - 1 February 2021 to 31 January 2022 WHO - 25 February 2021 - Download
  • COVAX - Generating acceptance and demand for COVID-19 vaccines - WHO and UNICEF, 16 February 2021 - Download.
  • COVAX - COVID-19 vaccination: supply and logistics guidance (February 2021) - WHO and UNICEF, 15 February 2021 - Download.
    Community needs, perceptions, and demand: community assessment tool - WHO, 5 February 2021 - Download.
  • COVID-19 vaccine introduction and deployment costing tool (CVIC tool) - WHO, 20 February 2021 - Download.
  • Preparedness, prevention, and control of COVID-19 in prisons and other places of detention: interim guidance - WHO, 8 February 2021 - Download
  • COVID-19 vaccination training for healthcare workers. Enroll here.
  • Orientation to national deployment and vaccination planning for COVID-19 vaccines. Enroll here
  • Occupational health and safety for health workers in the context of COVID-19. Enroll here.
  • COVID-19 vaccination: National deployment and vaccination planning and implementation session on 9 February 2021. Register here.
  • COVID-19 vaccination: Health workers session on 16 February 2021. Register here.
  • 2020 Year-end update - Operators Without Borders - February 2021 - Download
Inter-Cluster Updates
IASC - New Guidelines on Youth and Data Responsibility
IASC Guidelines on Working with and for Young People in Humanitarian and Protracted Crises
These IASC guidelines were created in response to Action 1: Services in the Compact for Young People in Humanitarian Action (CYPHA). Launched at the World Humanitarian Summit in May 2016, the CYPHA made a long-term commitment to young people through five key actions that relate to services, participation, capacity, resources and data. UNICEF and the Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC) led the development of the guidelines, co-chairing a task force that includes: ActionAid; CARE; Inter-Agency Working Group on Reproductive Health in Crises (IAWG); International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC); Mercy Corps; United Nations Office of the Secretary General's Envoy on Youth (OSGEY); Plan International; RET International; United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA); United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR); and the Major Group for Children and Youth (MGCY).

The aim of these guidelines is to serve as the ‘go-to’ guide for working with and for young people in humanitarian settings and protracted crises. Read more here.

IASC Operational Guidance on Data Responsibility in Humanitarian Action

Data responsibility is paramount as the humanitarian system collects and shares more data than ever before. Just as the COVID-19 pandemic has exacerbated existing humanitarian crises, it has also increased our reliance on digital technologies and timely data.
This system-wide Operational Guidance, which is a first, will ensure concrete steps for data responsibility in all phases of humanitarian action. It is the result of an inclusive and consultative process, involving more than 250 stakeholders from the humanitarian sector. Partners across the system will implement these guidelines in accordance with their respective mandates and the decisions of their governing bodies. Read more here.

Please also check out the latest 2021 State of Open Humanitarian Data - published by OCHA and HDX.

ELHRA- Gap Analysis of Gender-based Violence in Humanitarian Settinggs

A new Gap Analysis by Elrha and the Global Women’s Institute provides a systematic and comprehensive global assessment of gender-based violence in humanitarian emergencies within the framework of GBV risk mitigation, response, and prevention.
This report provides an overview of the key gaps and needs across GBV risk mitigation, response and prevention to improve humanitarian outcomes for women and girls affected by GBV.

Please share widely among your networks!

Read the report here.
Webinar/Event link Date & time Organisation

Operation and Maintenance of WASH Infrastructure
Webinar Series - webinar #1

2 March 2021 - 9AM EST PRO-WASH

Solar Powered Water Systems (SPWS) in Humanitarian Context
–Specific Considerations and Limitations of SPWS

3 March 2021 - 2PM CET Energypedia/SolarHub
Towards More Sustainable and Efficient Solar Powered
Water Systems
March 2021 TBD Energypedia/SolarHub
Water Security and Climate Change conference 
Hanoi, Viet Nam,
1-4 March 2021 2021 WSCCC
COVID-19 and WASH: What We Know and What's Next 11 March 2021 UNICEF
WASH in Schools (WinS) Distance-Learning Course 15 March 2021 Emory/UNICEF
Call for Contributions 42nd WEDC Conference 15 March  2021 (deadline) WEDC
Operation and Maintenance of WASH Infrastructure
Webinar Series - webinar #2
16 March 2021 9AM EST PRO-WASH
Menstrual Disorders: A Focus on Endometriosis 18 March 8AM EST Period Posse
World Water Day. Valuing Water #Water2me  22 March 2021 World
Operation and Maintenance of WASH Infrastructure
Webinar Series - webinar #3
Humanitarian Networks and Partnerships Weeks (HNPW) 2021  19 April to 7 May 2021 HNPW
Operation and Maintenance of WASH Infrastructure
Webinar Series - webinar #4
20 April 2021 9AM EST PRO-WASH
WASH & The COVID-19 Pandemic Online Forum 21-22 April 2021 WASH Futures
Global WASH Cluster Annual Meeting and Satellite Events  19-30th April 2021 GWC
Emergency Environmental Health Forum (EEHF) 24-28 May 2021 LSHTM
If you wish to contribute, please submit directly to:
Copyright © 2021 Global WASH Cluster, All rights reserved.
You are being contacted given your association with the GWC and/or your Cluster or Emergency WASH role.

Want to change how you receive these emails?
You can update your preferences or unsubscribe from this list.

This email was sent to <<Professional Email Address>>
why did I get this?    unsubscribe from this list    update subscription preferences
Global WASH Cluster · 8 Avenue de la Paix · Geneva · Geneve 1200 · Switzerland