Behavioural change requires awareness. The Swachh Bharat Mission and The National Urban Sanitation Policy (NUSP) acknowledges that a better understanding on planning, operation and use of public toilet facilities benefits public health and the city’s environment and is key to lasting improvements in the sanitation sector. To do this, the Government of India is undertaking a country-wide Information, Education and Communication (IEC) strategy and guarantees technical assistance and funding support to cities and states for awareness generation and capacity building.
In order to increase awareness among decision makers, operators and the public, cities are advised to set up communication and decision-making structures as well as an awareness building and marketing strategy. The main tools and steps are:
A strategic framework is necessary to guide concerned stakeholders (e.g. policy makers, city managers, consultants, NGOs) in identifying communication challenges and awareness building issues vis-à-vis public toilets and addressing the same in a systematic manner. The framework is useful for putting issues in perspective and addressing the same through appropriate communication interventions. The main steps are:
a) Formation of the City Sanitation Task Force to spearhead awareness generation efforts amongst citizens and other stakeholders.
b) City wide PT strategy recommends for city-wide awareness creation and behaviour change at specific time frames, while specific toilet projects incorporate the contextualised ideas while implementing toilet projects.
c) Translate the CSP awareness objectives in a City Wide Public Toilet Advocacy and Communication Strategy Framework by identifying:
- target audiences (including caretakers and cleaners),
- communication objective,
- activities under each category,
- main communication approaches to achieve the communication objectives
For any project to be successful, it is important to have good operators in place. To ensure participation of the “right” operators, the municipality needs to create interest and anticipation. This could include cold calls, newspaper advertisements, informal and formal information sharing, direct calls, emails, etc. Marketing efforts undertaken during the course of this project is summarized in the chart.