Gender Inclusive Toilet Design
In Nepal, as in other countries, women are disproportionately negatively affected by the lack of sanitation facilities. Some report taking extreme measures to avoid having to use the toilet, such as abstaining from eating or drinking, even if they are required to spend 12 hours or more a day working in public spaces. Providing gender-inclusive access to sanitation facilities and employment is at the core of Aerosan’s strategy:
We involve women in decision-making for the design of toilet facilities.
We ensure the employment of female sanitation workers.
With our partners, we invest in campaigns to increase awareness of hygiene for women & children, menstrual hygiene, and family planning on-site & in the community.
We monitor the impact on women and children
Aerosan partnered with The Decision Lab to determine the key factors for women that influence on whether or not they will use a public toilet.
Female toilet in Kathmandu
The Aerosan HUB pilot at Ratna Park involved local women in the re-design of an existing facility. After our gender-inclusive renovations, we saw a 46% increase in the proportion of female toilet users
Gender & Hygiene Awareness
Because of existing taboos and shame surrounding menstruation, women and girls in Nepal face additional barriers to fully participating in public life, especially without private and safe toilets in public spaces.
This is why, we not only design toilets to meet their needs, but also work towards changing the status quo, working with local NGO's to promote menstrual hygiene awareness. Our public toilet facilities are opportunities to spread awareness of the issue.
In 2017, Aerosan and partners hosted the first public toilet Menstrual Hygiene Awareness campaign at a public toilet in Nepal.