Innovations within the context of Chhattisgarh are evolving on a constant basis… The Community Incentive Method is one such innovation that cuts across the entire cycle of implementation, particularly with respect to mobilising, incentivising and monitoring ODF related processes and outcomes.
The Indian government’s Swachh Bharat Mission (Gramin) offers a 12,000 rupee incentive to households below the poverty line and some above the poverty line without a toilet. However, translating the incentive into successful sanitation improvements has been a challenge. Innovative and customisable ways, ideas and processes are needed to ensure community buy-in and achieve greater ownership of the process and high rates of toilet use in an environmentally safe manner.
To date, the state of Chhattisgarh has seen great successes in ending open defecation and ensuring usage of toilets. With 2 districts and over 50 blocks declared open defecation free (ODF), Chhattisgarh has also shown strong commitments to community-led processes and has seen a number of innovations, among them the Community Incentive Method. This method has evolved to meet the specific requirements of the state and has shown promise, especially in areas where there is a mix of households who are eligible and those who are not. Through this method, Chhattisgarh has paved the way for many more districts — both in terms of innovations around the incentive as well as to customise solutions for their own state.
This Learning Paper documents the Community Incentive Method. It focuses on how and why it evolved, how it works, and the challenges of using a similar approach.