IDS Working Paper 560 – Comprehensive social protection programmes: what is the potential for improving sanitation? – World

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Millions of people around the world lack access to adequate sanitation, undermining progress towards Sustainable Development Goal 6.2, which calls for adequate and equitable sanitation for all.

Efforts to improve sanitation outcomes have accelerated rapidly over the past decade, in parallel with an expansion of various financial incentives or subsidies to encourage access to services and motivate sanitation behavior. In parallel, social protection has become an integral part of development policies, with many low- and middle-income countries now offering some form of remittance to the most vulnerable. Comprehensive interventions that couple financial transfers with complementary support such as behavior change communication, training, or coaching are also growing in popularity.

Despite similarities between water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) subsidy schemes and social protection interventions, these policy areas have largely developed in silos and limited cross-sectoral learning has taken place. This paper begins to fill this knowledge gap by assessing the potential for comprehensive social protection in addressing sanitation outcomes and identifying policy implications for social protection and WASH communities. It focuses on a social protection program related to extreme poverty in rural Haiti.

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