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Rohingya Refugee Response - Bangladesh Factsheet - Water, Sanitation & Hygiene (WASH) (January - June 2021)

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1Provision of adequate, acceptable, safe and dignified life-saving water supply and sanitation services

2 Ensure refugees have access to information for hygiene promotion in their communities

3 Ensure WASH assistance is sustainable and cost-effective, incorporating environmental protection

Progress (January - June 2021)

WASH Rapid Response Team, led by our partner Oxfam, effectively responded to the fire on 22 March to ensure immediate access to basic WASH services for affected families. The response included the provision of 1,203,500 litres of water, distribution of 11,325 jerrycans, installation of 28 emergency latrines and desludging and treatment of 559.5 m3 of fecal sludge.

Solid waste management is ongoing, with partners and other actors in the camps. Currently seven solid waste composting plants are operational including collection points to disposal systems. In 2021, approximately 22,400 kgs of compost has been produced and provided to livelihood partners and nearby for use in gardens.

Capacity building for local partners, UNHCR facilitated the handover of two piped water networks in Camp 3 from Oxfam to BRAC following a three-month transition period where both partners worked together and shared all necessary knowledge and information to ensure continuous water supply to the refugees. As of 1 July 2021, BRAC is responsible for the maintenance of the two piped water networks.

Construction of Fecal Sludge Treatment Plant (FSTP) and its Intermediate Fecal Sludge Transfer Network in Camp 21 was completed. The plant of 6m3 per day capacity serves approximately 5,000 individuals. The plants and transfer networks across the camps ensure that human fecal waste is safely transferred, treated, and disposed to reduce public health risks. The construction of the FSTP in Ukhiya is 58% complete. The plant will ensure sustainable management for five camps, and the surrounding host community areas.

Monitoring of wastewater quality from FSTPs and drains was 60% complete by June 2021. The results are utilized to improve the performance of FSTPs across the camps.

In response to the seasonal drought in Teknaf in the first half of the year, UNHCR drilled one borehole and set up a new pipeline to connect the water sources to the existing water distribution in Camp 26. In May, a limited water trucking intervention was triggered to supplement 650m3 of safe drinking water to some 23,000 refugees living in Nayapara Registered Camp. UNHCR, in coordination with IOM, pumped 130m3 of water from a reservoir through the Leda pipeline to the Nayapara Registered Camp water treatment plant. Due to continuous rainfall, there has been significant improvements in water supply in Teknaf and most reservoirs are full. UNHCR started facilitating the phase out of water rationing that was implemented to manage the water supply during the dry season (November to March).

Hygiene promotion activities conducted by refugee volunteers continued, to reduce the spread of COVID-19 and acute watery diarrhea, through household visits and media messages. All households in UNHCR managed camps received bathing and laundry soaps; water treatment tablets were distributed to 52,236 households; 111,804 female hygiene kits and 3,800 regular hygiene kits were distributed.

WASH facilities at camp including distribution points, health centres, and law enforcement centres were constructed. During the reporting period, this included the distribution point in Camp 1E, a community centre in Camp 10, registration centre in Camp 9, health centre in Camp 2E, the Ukhiya Army dormitory, an Armed Police Battalion camp, a satellite teacher’s training college and the UNO oce in Ukhiya.