Meherpur Municipality emphasizes women’s empowerment and social balance for safe sanitation, and as part of that vision, they gathered to discuss the results of global research that highlights the significance of women’s empowerment for accessing safe sanitation facilities.
A workshop on “Measuring Urban Sanitation and Empowerment (MUSE) Study Project” was organized by ITN-BUET and Practical Action on 7th February at the Conference room of Meherpur Municipality. The workshop aimed to provide insights into the sanitation conditions in the municipality and promote women’s empowerment toward sanitation.
Ms. Makfie Farah, Knowledge Management Specialist at ITN-BUET, highlighted the involvement of the municipality in the global presence through the study. Later, she discussed the insights of the Global MUSE Study Project. The study sought to find the challenges faced by women in accessing and using safe and dignified sanitation facilities, water access, and menstrual hygiene. Women of various socioeconomic levels were surveyed to collect the data for the investigation.
Participants acknowledged that more sanitation-related projects should be introduced in the municipality, women should be more vocal about their difficulties, and stricter laws and regulations should be enacted to achieve female empowerment in sanitation. They acknowledged that awareness campaigns often fail to address the particular needs of women; hence their situation remains unaddressed. A sanitation worker and resident of the Harizon community, Asha Rani, highlighted the sufferings they faced due to shortage of toilets for women in the community.
The event was a success in raising awareness about the importance of women in improving urban sanitation conditions among the municipal council and officials of the Meherpur municipality. As a reaction to the discussion, the municipal authorities instantly took a decision to install the incomplete toilet connection of the Harizon community, one of the most left behind people in the city.
The Chief Guest of the event, Mr. Shahinur Rahman, Panel Mayor of Meherpur, concluded the workshop by stating, “Meherpur Municipality will thrive toward the attainment of Sustainable Development Goals by 2030 and excel further by 2041, improving the lives of all its citizens with special focus on women.”
A total of 35 participants attended the workshop, including the panel mayor, municipal officials, DPHE representative, community leaders, and sanitation workers.