Poster with a gender challenge

Water and sanitationGender

Tearfund’s partner in Ethiopia, Kale Heywet Church, has supported work in water and sanitation over many years in Ethiopia. They have a team of health educators who work with communities, raising awareness of hygiene, sanitation and capacity development. Water and Sanitation committees are elected and the educators train the committee members in hygiene and management. Many of these committees are now well organised and effective. However, changing attitudes is a slow process. The Water, Sanitation and Irrigation department has produced educational materials in Amharic on key topics such as hand washing and sanitation to support the committee’s work.

One of their most recent projects may prove very controversial. It is a poster of people collecting water in a variety of different ways. Not so surprising until you look more carefully and realise that all the pictures are of men! Addise Amado, Co-ordinator of Community Development and Education, created the idea for the poster. He comments, ‘We know that people are particularly concerned about an image of men carrying water on their back, but we need to challenge attitudes about gender so that men take a more active role in providing household water.’

EKHC WATSAN Programme, PO Box 5829, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia Email: saraelon@yahoo.com