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Sanitation lighting

Does sanitation lighting reduce risks of gender-based violence (GBV) in camps? 

Shining a light report cover image Photo: Abbie Trayler-Smith/Oxfam

In 2017-18 Oxfam worked with the Water Engineering and Development Centre at the University of Loughborough to carry out research as to whether and how lighting of sanitation facilities reduces risks of GBV. The research included three field studies in camps in Iraq, Nigeria and Uganda as well as eight brief case studies on lighting in camps.

The full research process included a literature review, detailed reports on the three field studies, and the eight case studies. The analysis from all this research was consolidated into a single report that also makes recommendations for humanitarian workers in areas of public health, lighting and reducing gender-based violence.

The field research was conducted by carrying out a baseline study in each location using a digital survey, focus groups discussions and key informant interviews, followed by the introduction of lighting: solar wall lamps in Iraq, Lamp posts in Uganda, and hand held solar lights in Nigeria. A final endline study sought to identify the impact of lighting on safety in the camp, and specifically fears around gender-based violence when using sanitation facilities.

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Lights in a refugee camp in Cox’s Bazaar, Bangladesh. Photo: Rachel Hastie/Oxfam