The concept of sanitation was earlier limited to disposal of human excreta by cess pools, open ditches, pit latrines, bucket system etc. Today it connotes a comprehensive concept, which includes liquid and solid waste disposal, food hygiene, personal, domestic as well as environmental hygiene. Proper sanitation is important not only from the general health point of view but it has a vital role to play in our individual and social life too. Sanitation is one of the basic determinants of quality of life and human development index. Good sanitary practices prevent contamination of water and soil and thereby prevent diseases. The concept of sanitation was, therefore, expanded to include personal hygiene, home sanitation, safe water, garbage disposal, excreta disposal and waste water disposal.
Keeping in view the above facts,”Total Sanitation Campaign (TSC)” emphasizes more on Information, Education and Communication (IEC), Human Resource Development, Capacity Development activities to increase awareness among the rural people and generation of demand for sanitary facilities. This will also enhance people’s capacity to choose appropriate options through alternate delivery mechanisms as per their economic condition. The Programme is being implemented with focus on community-led and people centred initiatives. Children play an effective role in absorbing and popularising new ideas and concepts. This Programme, therefore, intends to tap their potential as the most persuasive advocates of good sanitation practices in their own house-holds and in schools.
The main objectives of the TSC are as under:
- Bring about an improvement in the general quality of life in the rural areas.
- Accelerate sanitation coverage in rural areas.
- Generate felt demand for sanitation facilities through awareness creation and health education.
- Cover schools/ Anganwadis in rural areas with sanitation facilities and promote hygiene education and sanitary habits among students.
- Encourage cost effective and appropriate technologies in sanitation.
- Eliminate open defecation to minimize risk of contamination of drinking water sources and food.
- Convert dry latrines to pour flush latrines, and eliminate manual scavenging practice, wherever in existence in rural areas.