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Disposal of Child Faeces

Indicator Phrasing

% of caregivers who safely dispose of their children's faeces
See indicator in other languages

Indicator Phrasing

English: % of caregivers who safely dispose of their children's faeces

French: % de gardiens d’enfants qui s’occupent en toute sécurité des fèces de leurs enfants

Portuguese: % de cuidadores(as) que depositam de forma segura as fezes das suas crianças

Czech: % rodičů, kteří se bezpečně zbavují výkalů svých dětí

What is its purpose?

Even in households with access to latrines, children's faeces are often not disposed of safely and threaten both children's and adults' health. This indicator therefore assesses the proportion of caregivers who dispose of the children's faeces into improved sanitation facility.

How to Collect and Analyse the Required Data

Collect the following data by conducting individual interviews with a representative sample of primary caregivers (mainly mothers).



Q1: Can you please show me the place where you usually dispose of your children's faeces?

A1: _

1) put into any type of improved sanitation facility (see comment below)

2) throw them in the field/ bush/ river

3) bury them in the soil

4) leave them with other rubbish

5) other - specify: ............................   


To calculate the indicator's value, divide the number of respondents who reported to dispose of their children's faeces to an improved sanitation facility (see below) by the total number of interviewed respondents. Multiply the result by 100 to convert it to a percentage.

Important Comments

1) There are only two ways of child faeces disposal: safe and unsafe. Faeces are disposed safely when put in an improved sanitation facility (pit latrine with slab, ventilated improved pit latrine, flush/ pour toilet connected to a sewer system or a septic tank, composting toilet).


2) Especially when the respondent says that s/he disposes of the children's faeces into (any type of) improved sanitation facility, it is important that the data collector goes and sees whether 1) the sanitation facility is really an improved model; and 2) whether it has signs of being used. 


3) Ensure that all data collectors have a good understanding of what "an improved sanitation facility" means and are able to recognize it. 


4) It is recommended that this question is asked before the data collectors starts asking about other sanitation-related topics. Otherwise the respondent will likely reply what s/he thinks the "correct answer" is.


5) Ask this question only to households with children younger than 3 years. Often, the younger the children are, the more likely it is that the caregivers do not dispose of her/his faeces safely.

This guidance was prepared by People in Need ©

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