Factors influencing open defecation free status in areas practicing community led total sanitation: the case of Chiwala and Nkambo chifedoms of Masaiti district
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Zambia adopted Community Led Total Sanitation approach with the aim of ending open defecation and to reduce sanitation related diseases in the rural parts of the country. About 74.2 percent of households in rural areas have no pit-latrines as a result most of them either use the surrounding bush or cultivating areas. Furthermore, 80 percent of the diseases are associated with open defecation. The main aim of this study was to assess Open Defecation Free (ODF) status and factors that influence the sustainability of ODF status practices in Chiwala and Nkambo Chiefdoms of Masaiti District. Concurrent study design was used which involved households survey of 368 households from the villages of Chiwala and Nkambo Chiefdoms that were either declared or verified to be ODF. Qualitative data was also collected from the same communities through focus group discussion, households in-depth interviews and key informants interviews of CLTS focal persons. Quantitative data was analysed using Excel and STATA version 13 while qualitative data was organised using NVivo Software version 10 and analyzed using a thematic method. The study revealed that sustainability of Open Defecation Free (ODF) status was at 26 percent in Chiwala Chiefdom and 82 percent in Nkambo Chiefdom considering all the ODF indicators or criteria. It also showed that there was a reduction in sanitation related diseases. Participants also reported that it was more convenient to use the latrines because they were found within yard of house. The use of latrine was considered as a respectful practice, the increase in awareness of contamination of water sources were some of the factors suggested to have influenced ODF status. In addition, frequent visits by traditional leaders and sanitation Action Group members, reduction in sanitation related diseases and the role of traditional leaders-using punitive measures against offenders were motivating community members to sustain the ODF status. Some of the barriers of ODF sustainability status were inadequate water supply, inadequate supervision by traditional leaders and individual factors such as laziness and negative attitude. The study concluded that Nkambo Chiefdom had effective sustainability of ODF compared to Chiwala Chiefdom that had ineffective sustainability of ODF status.
The University of Zambia