Baseline Study on WASH in Slums in Puducherry

In 2014, Sanitation First installed 44 GroSan toilets in Puducherry with the aim of reducing open defecation in slum areas. Following a positive response, 50 additional GroSan toilets are now being installed in Santhikuppam, GN Palayam, Vaikkal Mettu Theru, Periyapet and Thidir Nagar.  As a precursor to the next phase , Sanitation First engaged Development Solutions to undertake a baseline assessment in these 5 slums in Puducherry to understand practices and perceptions of the communities on WASH and to establish benchmarks to assess impact at project completion.


To measure the impact of Sanitation First’s interventions in the slums of Puducherry, a baseline survey was conducted to assess the inhabitants’ current practices and perceptions on WASH and to establish benchmarks to assess impact at project completion. A baseline survey was conducted in five slums across Puducherry to assess:

  • Access and use of water
  • Toilet use and practices
  • Solid waste management
  • MHM and hygiene practices
  • Health and quality of life

Approach & Methodology

A quantitative household survey was undertaken across five slums in Puducherry - Santhikuppam, Thidir Nagar, GN Palayam, Vaikkal Mettu Theru, and Periyapet, where the SF interventions are proposed to be undertaken (an overview of the project locations is given in the following sections)
The data collection instrument had close-ended questions to assess knowledge and practices related to the collection and storage of drinking water, availability of toilets and defecation practices, awareness on hygiene practices, menstrual hygiene management, solid waste management, incidences of disease and perceptions on quality of life and overall satisfaction and sense of well-being in the communities. This was then analysed using SPSS.


The survey served as a benchmark to measure the outcomes of the intervention; as well as to inform the intervention, so it could be tailored to the needs of the community. Recommendations to ensure sustainable and and climate change resilient WASH system were shared.

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