Community-Led Total Sanitation: whistle-blowing children combat open defecation in Bangladesh
Updated - Thursday 26 March 2009
Children in the villages of Dinajpur district in northern Bangladesh have caught some 250 people practicing open defecation in the past six months. They shame the culprits by blowing whistles.
The children's action is part of the Community-Led Total Sanitation (CLTS) campaign in the country, described as “an integrated approach to achieving and sustaining open defecation free status.” As well as whistle-blowing, the children also mark open defecation spots with flags and march around chanting slogans against open defecation.
CLTS, designed by social development specialist Dr. Kamal Kar, was introduced by international development agency Plan to around 200 villages in 2004. The children’s campaign is just the beginning. CLTS allows villagers to generate their own ideas for improvement, take control of development processes and decision-making, and manage and sustain the activities. Often, CLTS has led to improving latrine designs, adopting hygienic practices, managing solid waste and wastewater, protecting drinking water sources, and other environmental activities.
Plan is now promoting CLTS in other countries in Asia, Africa, and the Middle East. A CLTS Handbook  is also available.
 Kar, K. and Chamber, R. (2008). Handbook on community-led total sanitation. London, UK, Plan UK and Brighton, UK, Institute of Development Studies at the University of Sussex. Download here
Related news: Community Led Total Sanitation (CLTS): long term validation and agreed standards are needed, Source, 14 Aug 2008
Source: Cezar Tigno, ADB, Jan 2009
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