Virtual Environmental and Humanitarian Adviser Tool – (VEHA Tool) is a tool
to easily integrate environmental considerations in humanitarian response. Field Implementation guidances are useful for the design and execution of humanitarian activities in the field.
Use of inappropriate equipment and devices can lead to their failure, non-use, expiry, and disposal, causing waste and pollution.
Women and girls are disproportionately affected by the lack of access to basic water, sanitation, and hygiene facilities, due to their needs during periods of increased vulnerability to infection around menstruation and reproduction cycles. Additionally, other groups may have special needs in terms of hygiene practices. For this reason, disaggregate and understand the different groups of people in the community that may have special needs and behaviours when performing hygiene actions. For example, women may be provided with disposable or reusable menstrual pads which will need to be handled after every use. as a consequence, women may need special and additional messages tailored to handle these specific items and the messages need to be created accordingly women’s beliefs. Regarding other groups such as persons with disabilities or HIV/AIDS, create special messages explaining actions that are environmentally sensitive regarding special items they may be using. Regarding sexual health items, messages need to be oriented towards the safe disposal of items such as condoms. Condoms cause problems by clogging sewage drains.
Girls and women in low-resource and emergency contexts without access to adequate menstrual hygiene management facilities and supplies can experience stigma and social exclusion while also foregoing important educational, social, and economic opportunities.
Air pollution is due to the environmental impacts associated with transportation instead of procuring items locally.
Water and soil pollution due to inappropriate disposal of used medical items such as items expired medicines and unused or broken medical devices.
UNHCR Brazil reported medical waste from the supply of pre-selected, pre-packed medicine kits, leading to much of the unwanted items creating a burden on local waste management services.
# of items/medicines assessed against agreed criteria such as local capacities to use, maintain; in date; functioning; re-usable.
Prevention of environmental damage
Time and budget to research local context, needs, capacities against potential devices, equipment, and medicines and to develop a plan to mitigate environmental impacts.