The Liberia WASH Consortium (LWC) is pleased to announce that Population Services International (PSI) has since October 2013 joined the Consortium as the 6th core member after being the Consortium’s Associate Member for over a year.
Population Services International is the global leader in health social marketing, working in 69 countries to improve health outcomes in child survival, malaria, family planning/reproductive health, and HIV prevention.
In Liberia, PSI has ongoing programs in Water, Sanitation, and Hygiene and in family planning/reproductive health. PSI Liberia is known as “the marketing expert” in health, and specializes in working through the private sector to develop innovative, sustainable interventions that measurably improve the health outcomes of poor and vulnerable Liberians. In WASH, PSI Liberia works with Global Communities (formerly CHF) on the USAID-funded IWASH project to market Water Guard household water treatment and Community Led Total Sanitation, and promotes safe water in cholera-prone urban communities. PSI has pioneered the use of marketing to increase the rate of uptake and achievement of Open Defecation Free status in communities where Community-Led Total Sanitation (CLTS) programs are being implemented.
Behavioral change remains a challenging problem in the WASH sector in Liberia. PSI’s rich experience in Behavior Change Communication (BCC) will be a substantial added value for the WASH Consortium. In addition, PSI brings diversity by being an American INGO. As well, PSI brings diversity in the WASH Consortium in terms of its approach, as social marketing is not currently represented among the LWC’s membership. This is an opportunity to enable the LWC to expand the range of programming it offers the people of Liberia.
In an admission letter to PSI/Liberia, the LWC Board expressed hope that, “PSI will work harmoniously with, and in partnership with the other members and partners to contribute meaningfully to the mission and the vision of the Consortium in the coming years”. PSI/Liberia for her part has accepted the LWC Board’s overwhelming decision of her admission into the Consortium and has promised to abide by the vision, mission, values and operational framework of the Liberia WASH Consortium.
As the WASH Sector in Liberia is gradually transitioning more into development, it is anticipated that PSI/Liberia will contribute significantly to the LWC 5 years Strategy (2013-2017); by utilizing social marketing interventions to promote sanitation which has been given less priority by Liberia and the rest of the world.