Workshop: COVID-19 and WASH Behaviour Change
During the WASH and COVID-19 Pandemic Online Symposium, Plan International Australia and partners, supported by the Water for Women Fund, convened a workshop on COVID-19 and WASH behaviour change.
COVID-19 has challenged WASH sector actors to expand their understanding of WASH-related hygiene behaviours beyond the traditional focus on faecal–oral disease transmission routes, food preparation, post-defecation practices and management of infant faeces.
COVID-19 has different important ‘moments’ for hand hygiene including after touching surfaces, coughing or sneezing, and additional settings beyond the home in which such hygiene behaviours are significant – schools, workplaces and public spaces.
CSOs delivering the Australian Government’s Water for Women Fund ‘pivoted’ their existing hygiene behaviour change work to respond to COVID-19 implementing a range of innovative, inclusive and contextualised interventions in support of improved handwashing and other hygiene behaviours across 20 projects in 15 countries.
This workshop shared and explored these COVID-19 hygiene behaviour change efforts and reflected on the emerging lessons about what adaptations were needed, what has worked well and what has not, and how the Water for Women Fund’s focus on inclusive and sustainable WASH has been translated into and strengthened COVID-19 hygiene behaviour change approaches and outcomes.