Yatra spreads awareness across India

WaterAid has been involved in a 56-day carnival, called a Yatra, raising awareness of the importance of hygiene and sanitation across five states in India, concluding on World Toilet Day on 19 November.


29 Nov 2012 | India

The colourful event, which reached more than 90 million people, was put on by the Ministry of Drinking Water and Sanitation's Nirmal Bharat Abhiyan (NBA) campaign, consultancy firm Quicksand, and WASH United, comprising several organisations including WaterAid.

It included a variety of interactive educational games, communication materials and events related to water, sanitation and hygiene. They all took inspiration from cultural paradigms and symbols that are popular across the country to help the public engage in the important messages.

Within the event space, which spanned nearly 10,000 square-meters, WaterAid hosted a Toilet Laboratory, consisting of various toilet models and posters and flexes with messages on sanitation and hygiene, and a microscope for showing biological contamination.

WaterAid also led various games and quizzes for children to help educate them about handwashing, and invited people to sign and leave their handprint on kora white cloth to show their support for the provision of safe sanitation.

The Yatra also aimed to shine a light on the issue of menstrual hygiene management and its role in achieving equity and dignity for women.

The high-profile national event had the backing of well-known figures, such as Bollywood stars and government ministers. The famous bollywood actress Vidhya Balan was part of press launch on 28 Sep in New Delhi along with Minister Jai Ram Ramesh.

The event received a wide range of coverage in the media, helping spread its reach and impact even further.