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Global WASH Cluster
GWC Monthly Newsletter #4
07 / 05 / 2021
Dear colleagues,
Welcome to the fourth edition of the GWC 2021 Monthly Newsletter! We are pleased to share in this issue news on the Accountability and Quality Assurance Initiative, The Real-time Assessment of Coordination in Emergencies, and updates from partner organizations including the German WASH Network, Solidarités International, UNICEF, SWA and WHO. 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 Iraq WASH Cluster COVID-19 Lessons Learned and the Niger WASH Cluster KAP survey in Diffa, Niger - (French).

The Global Humanitarian Overview (GHO) for 2021 was launched on 1st December 2020 to help 160 million of the 235 million most vulnerable people who face hunger, conflict, displacement, the impacts of climate change and the COVID-19 pandemic in 56 countries. As of the 30th April, revised requirements were US$36.0 billion to assist US$159 million of the 237 million people in need in 56 countries according to OCHA (read more here). The humanitarian appeals funding reported for WASH in 2021 is 5.6%, (US$ 95 million received vs US$ 1.6 billion requested) according to FTS.

In April, more than 7.2 million new cases and 160,000 deaths were recorded in countries in the Global Humanitarian Overview (GHO) – Over a third of HRP countries have recorded more cases in the first four months of 2021 than in the whole of 2020. The increase in 2021 is likely due to the presence of multiple Variants of Concern and relaxation of, or non-compliance with, public health and safety measures (PHSM). More than half of HRP countries are no longer considered in lockdown (read more here).
One year since the start of the pandemic, we remain 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.

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, 26th May 2021 to
Best regards,

CAST (Cluster Advocacy and Support Team)
© UNICEF/UN0456993/Singh
GWC Collaborations and News
GWC Annual Events - April 2021 - Thank you 🙏🏽

Many thanks to all for attending the Main and Satellite events of the Global WASH cluster Annual Meeting 2021. We are also very grateful to the 30+ partners, academia, practitioners, and actors involved in the organization of these lively presentations. We are currently collecting recordings and materials and we will share them all in the coming weeks - in the meantime, please complete the quick 5-minute evaluation on the Satellite Events below to help us improve these sessions for the future.

GWC Satellite Events 5-minute Evaluation
📢 Join the Environmental Emergency Health Forum - Registrations are open!

Dates: The EEHF will be held between 24 - 28 May 2021. 

Times: The EEHF will be held between 11:00-14:00 UK time each day to maximise the time zones for our global audience. 
Registration: To register for the EEHF, follow the instructions on this website. You can log onto this page and find the complete overview of sessions for each day, however, you will also receive an email every day, an hour before the webinar starts, with your own personal link to the webinar. The registration is for the whole week, you can attend all days, any part of the of a day or any part of the sessions, registration will give you access to all five days of the EEHF. 
📈 Realtime Assessment of WASH Coordination in Humanitarian Emergencies
We are happy to share with you the "Realtime Assessment of WASH Coordination in Humanitarian Emergencies" summary report developed by Tufts University in collaboration with UNICEF and the Global WASH Cluster.

A key component of effective humanitarian response is coordination, which brings together relevant stakeholders and ultimately, ideally, increases efficiency. This work aimed to better understand the perspective of National Coordination Platform (NCP) partners on how water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH) coordination leads to response outcomes in humanitarian contexts. To gain a deeper understanding of the views of WASH stakeholders on the overall value of the NCP in humanitarian response, evaluations were conducted in three contexts facing different humanitarian crises: Cox’s Bazar, DRC, and Yemen. Read more here.
Accountability and Quality Assurance Initiative - Final Guidance Note

We are happy to share the final Accountability and Quality Assurance (AQA) guidance, overview and analytical frameworks which have been added to the AQA section in the Coordination Toolkit.

High-quality WASH responses are critical to saving lives, preventing harm and supporting life with dignity. The humanitarian community invests significant resources in providing assistance that is not only technically effective but in line with fundamental humanitarian principles. However, evaluations repeatedly highlight reoccurring technical issues, and it is common to hear from those affected by crises that aid does not meet their priority needs in a safe and dignified way.

Quality is a broad term that covers many different aspects of performance and is relevant to all stages of the humanitarian programme cycle. The AQA Initiative uses the following criteria to characterise a quality humanitarian response:

ACHIEVES OBJECTIVES. The response is effective at achieving objectives.

AVOIDS DOING HARM. The response avoids doing harm and promotes the safety of people affected by crisis and others engaging with the response.

SATISFIES THE COMMUNITY. People affected by crises are satisfied that the response meets their priority needs in an appropriate and timely way.

These documents have been developed on behalf of the WASH sector as part of the AQA Initiative, led by Oxfam and Solidarités International, in partnership with the Global WASH Cluster. The AQA initiative is funded by UNICEF and is supported by the Global WASH Cluster’s Technical Working Group on Quality Assurance and is a priority initiative of the WASH sector’s Road Map 2020-2025.

The Graduate Professional Diploma Programme (GPDP) in Humanitarian WASH has officially started!

IHE-Delft and UNICEF, as the lead of the Global WASH Cluster, in cooperation with the humanitarian WASH sector, has created a Graduate Professional Diploma Programme (GPDP) . The GPDP programme consists of the following four courses, which will be offered yearly.

By completing these four courses (in a no-specific order), IHE Delft GPDP diploma in humanitarian WASH is awarded.

All modules are available via an online format. The study load is 140 hours per course, for a total of 560 study hours for the GPDP.


  1. Governance in Humanitarian Contexts (starts 3 May 2021)
  2. Public and Environmental Health in Emergencies (starts 6 September 2021)
  3. Water and Sanitation in Urban Humanitarian Contexts (starts 17 January 2022)
  4. Building Resilient Systems in Fragile Contexts (starts 2 May 2022)
Application GPDP 2022

The Graduate Professional Diploma Programme in Humanitarian WASH starting in 2021 is full. You can apply for the programme starting in 2022. Apply now.


WASH Advocacy Mapping Survey - Roadmap Initiative 4.3

The initiative 4.3 “Advocacy for Sector Strengthening” is currently co-lead by Action contre la Faim and French Water Partnership with the participation of GWC CAST. The ambition of this transversal initiative is to develop an inclusive WASH sector advocacy strategy based on gaps, priorities, actors and trends identified at all different levels. 
The phased action plan (5 years) includes:
  1. Phase 1 - Mapping of global and national advocacy priorities and compiling existing Advocacy strategies and material among GWC (and broader Humanitarian WASH sector) members (see phase 1 TOR)
  2. Phase 2 - Build an Advocacy Strategy for the humanitarian WASH sector
  3. Phase 3 - Design a WASH Humanitarian Advocacy / Campaign training package, and train practitioners from global to local
  4. Phase 4 - Monitor the progress on the Advocacy Strategy in the next 5 years
Join the initiative : We are calling for you to join us in this initiative. There are several levels of engagement possible, from being part of the decision-making process to just sharing information about your advocacy strategy and/or needs. As we kick off Phase 1 (Mapping), please let us know your level of interest and organizational focal point for advocacy, by completing
 this very short survey by 21st May . This will support the upcoming report on WASH advocacy trends and opportunities that will be released in July 2021. 

Your contribution is key to successful advocacy.
Vacancies - Finalizing the "Guidance on Market Based Programming for Humanitarian WASH Practitioners" - apply now!

The GWC through the German Toilet Organisation is looking for 2 consultants as shown below:

Interested candidates are kindly requested to apply and send the following documents by May 10, 2021 to

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. 
Coordination Toolkit Updates
The following new strategic operational framework examples have been added to the CTK :
FST Deployments

WASH Information Management Support to Fiji - virtual deployment

Haitham Farag who is seconded from the Norwegian Church Aid (NCA) in his role of Information Management Officer to the GWC/FST has provided direct support for 4 months to Fiji (23rd December 2020 - 24th April 2021).

The virtual deployment objective was to work with the cluster coordinator to ensure that the Ministry of Health and Medical Services and all cluster members are able to make informed (evidence-based) strategic decisions in planning, resource mobilization, monitoring, reporting and documentation of achievements and lessons learnt throughout TC YASA / ANA response and early recovery to affected communities with an estimated population of 145,000. 

During the deployment, Haitham consolidated reports from Cluster participants, modeled data to support the Cluster information needs. Tools for collecting, analyzing, and reporting Cluster activities and identifying response gaps have been developed and utilized in the process that included consultation with government and UN-OCHA counterparts. The cluster conducted multiple orientation sessions for partners on the different IM tools and their respective use in the different decision support processes. All IM resources and information were made available on the Fiji WASH Cluster webpage.

WASH Coordination Support to West Darfur, Sudan
Clashes erupted on 16 January 2021 in the Krinding area of Al Geneina town, West Darfur resulting in IDP displacement due to inter-communal conflict between Masalit and Arab tribes. According to the International Organization for Migration (IOM), in the first four months of 2021 close to 237,000 people were displaced by conflict in Darfur - more than four times the 58,000 people displaced by conflict in 2020 - creating a significant increase in new needs (read the latest humanitarian sitreps here).

Ewan Chainey, FST Cluster Coordinator with OXFAM was deployed on 5th March until 1st of May. The main focus was to provide surge support to coordinate the WASH response for the newly displaced population. Other key areas of focus were to support the WASH sector rainy season emergency preparedness and response plan, including Cholera outbreak preparedness. A gap analysis tool was developed and a cluster diagnostic to identify priorities was conducted (including coordination & IM). After the conflict of April 4th  - assessments were carried out resulting in recommendations for immediate activities and the roll-out of the WASH Action Plan for mitigation before the rains in May /June. Find out more on the Sudan WASH Sector website.
Stories from the Field - La Soufrière Volcano Eruption - Saint Vincent et Grenadines

On April 9 at 8:41 am La Soufrière Volcano erupted. The volcano is located to the north of the island of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines (SVG) and had been inactive since 1979. 

La Soufrière Volcano presents actively ongoing explosive eruptions with the alert level remaining in RED.

Its pattern of seismic activity over the last few days is typical of the growth and destruction of lava domes.

Explosions with accompanying ashfall, of similar or larger magnitude, can occur with little or no warning impacting St. Vincent and neighboring islands according to CDEMA.
To date, with an average population of about 110,000 people,  88 public shelters are activated with 4,202 occupants, around 13,154 have been registered as displaced persons and 6,790 people are hosted in private homes. UN Barbados and the Eastern Caribbean are seeking to mobilize US$29,225,000 M through a Flash Appeal. Financial requirements for the WASH sector are estimated at US$4,000,000. 

Coordination Team
Amy Sluiter - WASH Coordinator 
Alexandra Karkouli - GWC FST WASH Information Manager

La Soufrière Volcano eruption (SVG) WASH Sector Website

Resources and Tools from National Humanitarian WASH Coordination Platforms - April 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

The Measurement and Monitoring of Water Supply, Sanitation & Hygiene Affordability

Universal access to safe drinking water, sanitation and hygiene, a human right enshrined in the 2030 Global Goals, will not be reached unless its affordability is addressed and monitored, according to a new report. This report, led by UNICEF and WHO with contributions from an extensive expert group of international experts, unpacks the complexities of defining and monitoring affordability and provides recommendations to address them.  Improved monitoring of affordability will ultimately allow governments and the water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) sector to more effectively target support and to make WASH services affordable to all.
 – read about it on here.

New WASH In Schools Website (WinS)

On 22 April, the WASH in Schools (WinS) Network deployed a brand -new WinS website. The website is a repository of resources such as publications, reports, thematic and policy briefs, journals and papers and simplified visualization graphics, on WinS. The aim is to help users gain increased understanding of what other partners, including governments, are doing on WinS.

Launch of the Compendium of Water Supply Technologies in Emergencies 

The new "Compendium of Water Supply Technologies in Emergencies" has been officially launched today as part of the GWC annual meeting satellite events and below you will find all relevant links and information to access the document or the corresponding online Emergency WASH portal.  

Softcopy Version
The full PDF document of the "Compendium of Water Supply Technologies in Emergencies" can be directly accessed following the link above.

Emergency WASH Online Platform
The online platform of the "Compendium of Water Supply Technologies in Emergencies" is part of a bigger Emergency WASH knowledge portal that currently consists of the interactive online versions of both the emergency water supply compendium and the emergency sanitation compendium. An additional hygiene promotion online platform will follow early next year. The Emergency WASH platform can be accessed following the link above.

Online Training Registration
For those of you interested, we are offering a free online deep dive training session on how to use the Emergency Water Supply Compendium. The online training session will take place on Thursday, June 3, 2021 (15:00-16:30 CEST) and you can register for the training by clicking the link above.

If you have any comments, feedback, suggestions or questions please do not hesitate to contact us anytime using the feedback button above. 

WASH in Emergencies Regional Workshop Series 2021

The German WASH Network is pleased to announce its next batch of Regional WASH Workshops for the year 2021. We are looking forward to your applications and please feel free to also share this invitation/ announcement with interested colleagues, your regional/ local implementation structures and/or relevant local partner organisations. Please note: Due to the ongoing global pandemic all Regional WASH Workshops in 2021 will be conducted in a virtual online format (on 5 consecutive days). 

Below you will find the new dates and the links to the respective registration forms:

Regional WASH Workshop MENA  -When: June 20-24, 2021
Language: English - Application Deadline: June 6, 2021
Application Form - MENA

Regional WASH Workshop (francophone) Africa  -When: August 30 - September 3, 2021
Language: French - Application Deadline: August 8, 2021
Application Form - Africa FR

Regional WASH Workshop (anglophone) Africa  - When: October 4-8, 2021
Language: English - Application Deadline: September 12, 2021
Application Form - Africa EN

Regional WASH Workshop Asia  -When: October 25-29, 2021
Language: English - Application Deadline: October 3, 2021
Application Form Asia

Read more here

Solidarités International - New Octopus Website!

The updated version of OCTOPUS is now available! Dedicated to the treatment and disposal of faecal sludge in emergencies, this collaborative platform offers contextualized case studies. Since 2021, OCTOPUS spreads its tentacles with a new Community of practitioners and a directory of experts.

Interested in supporting? You are kindly invited to share your case studies, to join OCTOPUS community and its directory of experts or to directly contact us at

Climate Webinar Series - SWA together with GWP, UNICEF Water and WaterAid co-convened a Climate Webinars Series to strengthen partners’ knowledge of and capacity to integrate water, sanitation and hygiene and climate policies, plans, action, and financing. The webinars highlighted Climate and WASH related tools and the practical country experience of SWA partners.
Gender Briefing Paper – SWA launched its 4th Briefing Paper on Strengthening gender equality in access to water, sanitation and hygiene. The Gender Briefing Paper explores actions that can be taken by partners to improve gender equality in all aspects of their work. Previous SWA Briefing Papers on Climate, Integrity and Accountability, and Leave no one behind can be accessed here.
WASH Going on? -  SWA has launched a new series of one-on-one talks between SWA Youth Champion, Nicole Becker, and other experts. The talks highlight the importance of access to safe water, sanitation and hygiene and its positive impacts on other development goals. The series also promote the voices of young people and how their participation are crucial for the progress of the sector. The first conversation was between Nicole and SWA CEO, Catarina de Albuquerque, who discussed on the Human Rights on Water and Sanitation, and the link with gender, climate action.

Domestic water quantity, service level and health - useful resource

Sufficient water is vital to human health, well-being and prosperity. Daily consumption of sufficient water is required to replenish body fluids and facilitate physiological processes. Water is also required for personal and domestic hygiene, and for productive and some recreational activities. Households with readily accessible water sources and that use more domestic water have significantly better health than households with more distant water sources that use less water. This publication reviews evidence on adequate amounts of water for health and well-being. It recommends targets for domestic water supply to ensure beneficial health outcomes. Download here.

WASH and Covid-19

Covid-19 Hygiene Hub Updates

In this issue, we are very excited to bring you our new learning brief on disability and inclusion in COVID-19 prevention programmes. We also highlight our collection of webinar recordings and share with you two new case studies, one about tracking and responding to community perceptions about COVID-19 in two provinces in Zimbabwe, and one on empowering women through mobile technology to combat COVID-19 in Kenya.

Learning briefs
This month, we are delighted to share with you a new Hygiene Hub learning brief that summarises 10 lessons learnt about how COVID-19 prevention programmes can be inclusive of people with disabilities, older adults and caregivers. In the brief, we also suggest key actions that can help you strengthen your inclusion planning, implementation and monitoring. In the weeks to come, we look forward to bringing you another learning brief that will focus lessons for monitoring and evaluation that have emerged from global COVID-19 response programming. Please also check out our previous learning brief on hand hygiene promotion.

Technical resources
Our collection of now almost 200 technical resources is designed to support you in your COVID-19 response by giving you access to the relevant evidence and guidance. We continue to add to the collection and update the resources as new evidence becomes available. All of our technical resources are available in English, French, Spanish, and Arabic. Please email us at if you have requests or ideas for future resources.

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
Integrated Response Framework for Isolation and Quarantine as Non-Pharmaceutical Interventions Against COVID-19

READY has developed an integrated response framework* for isolation and quarantine as non-pharmaceutical interventions (NPIs) against COVID-19. By supporting the adherence to two NPIs through integrated multi-sectoral humanitarian services, the framework promotes a broader lens for outbreak readiness and response.

This revised framework includes updated technical resources aligned with the latest guidance for COVID-19 response. Download here.

Latest WASH & Covid-19 New Updates From Partners

  • WHO COVID-19 infection prevention and control (IPC) pillar achievements.  February 2020 – January 2021 - Access here
  • WHO - COVID-19 and mandatory vaccination: Ethical considerations and caveats - 26 April 2021-  Access here
  • WHO - Second round of the national pulse survey on continuity of essential health services during the COVID - 28 April 2021 - Access here
  • WHO - The role of community health workers in COVID-19 vaccination: implementation support guide - 26 April 2021 - Access here
  • WHO - Estimating COVID-19 vaccine effectiveness against severe acute respiratory infections (SARI) - 28 April - Access here
  • Disability considerations for COVID-19 vaccination: WHO and UNICEF policy brief, 19 April 2021 - Access here
  • RCCE Collective Service - latest resources - Access here
  • COVID-19 RCCE strategy available in French and Spanish
  • Media dialogue: COVID-19 misinformation in Africa and the role of journalists -  ESAR RCCE Media Taskforce - Access here
  • Afghanistan Informal Settlement Assessment - Factsheet booklet of multi-cluster & COVID-19 analysis - REACH - December 2020 - Access here
  • RCCE Bahavioural Indicators Dashboard - April 2021 - Access here
Inter-Cluster Updates
IASC - Key & Latest Resources - April and May 2021


The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic has changed the lives of individuals, communities and societies across the world. To date, the most important insight from the global response has been that to successfully slow transmission, it is essential to diagnose, isolate and care for all cases of COVID-19, including those with mild disease. In order to stop cases from becoming clusters and clusters to progress into vast and rapid transmission, speed, scale and equity must be the guiding principles. Download here.

Other resources:
Webinar/Event link Date & time Organisation

Humanitarian-Development Nexus for Venezuelans:
Bridging WASH Policy and Services


Best Practices and Lessons Learned: Adaptation of Public Health
and Social Measures for COVID-19 in Low Capacity and
Humanitarian Settings

17 May 3:30 CET IASC

Transformative practice and gender relations in water
security projects

21 May Oxford Tallks

Virtual Symposium on Menstrual Health and Hygiene in West and
Central Africa

24-27 May UNICEF,

Emergency Environmental Health Forum (EEHF)

24-28 May LSTHM

IWA Digital World Water Congress

24 May - 4 June IWA

Menstrual Hygiene Day 

28 May World
6th International Faecal Sludge Management Conference (FSM6) 31 May - 4 June IA
IWRA Online Conference 2021 7- 9 June IWRA
European Pact For Water Online-Meeting 10 June 11:45AM CET EPFW
Bonn International Water Conference 2021 1 July 2021 Gov. Germany
If you wish to contribute, please submit directly to:
On 2 May 2021, Javed Alam, a 34-year-old student of UN volunteers, sanitize oxygen cylinders outside a refilling centre in New Delhi, India.
On 2 May 2021 a 34-year-old student of UN volunteers, sanitizes oxygen cylinders outside a refilling centre in New Delhi, India. © UNICEF/UN0456993/Singh
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