A knowledge resource selected by UNICEF for humanitarian practitioners everywhere
Guidance on Roles and Key Actions to Ensure Continuity and Affordability of Essential WASH Goods and Services During and After the Global COVID-19 Pandemic
When a global pandemic such as COVID-19 strikes, it has a major disruptive effect on both businesses and public services with major implications for jobs and livelihoods and hence household incomes. As a result of the health impacts and preventive measures taken, many essential services are threatened, including water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH).
The response to avoid or reduce the disruption of WASH services and supply chains is necessarily a multi-pronged one, involving many stakeholders and market players. Responses need to be evidence-based, timely and coordinated. In addition, the response needs to be focused on poor and vulnerable populations, given the greater impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on these groups, and the lower service levels and resilience of their current access to WASH.
Hence UNICEF’s objective is to: “ensure that all children and their families have access to safe, sustainable and affordable water and sanitation services, hand hygiene facilities and hygiene supplies, including menstrual supplies for girls and women in all settings.”
And for Building Forward Better, UNICEF “seeks opportunities to ensure water and energy efficiency (reduce operations & maintenance costs costs), to identify and implement new technologies for supply, and to build capacity of governments, utilities and communities on climate resilience of services.”