This project is a part of our shared program with Western Water And Sanitation Forum (WEWASAFO). Our team is pleased to directly share the below report (edited for clarity, as needed).
Welcome to the School
A normal day in this school is comprised of attending classes, taking occasional breaks for games, and then dismissal for home in the evening. While the kids are at school, parents are on their farms. The people from this area rely on agriculture to earn a living.
The school hosts many students with HIV/AIDS who persevere despite much contempt. There is a great struggle to learn, and it is hard to cope with the stigmas that come with HIV/AIDS. All students in this school depend on the Constituency Development Fund (CDF) for their fees, though this body does not pay the entire amount.
Kidinye Primary has an insufficient number of classrooms for its growing population, as well as only a few sanitation facilities constructed by CDF and the European Union. "Almost all our students stay with old, poor grandparents who, due to old age and poverty, cannot adequately provide their basic needs, let alone their school fees and other requirements for learning," shares the deputy principal.
The school has a 500-liter water storage tank, courtesy of the European Union. In fact, almost all of the school facilities ranging from classrooms to sanitation facilities have been donated to the school by the European Union. There is also a seasonal hand-pump well that is being shared between both the primary and secondary sections. But during the dry seasons, students must carry water from home. Unfortunately our visit to the school proved that though there is a well on school property, it is not protected. The well is not sealed properly, and allows surface runoff and waste to enter. Students often suffer from diarrhea after drinking water fetched from this well. Since both the small tank and the well depend on the seasons, this school is in desperate need of another water source.
The school has only one pit. There are three doors built over the top, but they are only for girls. Boys do not have latrines and must travel over to the primary section to share their facilities. Thus the primary school's latrines often have long lines during class breaks! During our initial visit, it was also apparent that because of a lack of latrines, there is an open defecation issue on school grounds.
There is one hand-washing station, but it has no soap. Garbage is disposed of in a shallow pit behind the buildings.
Plans: Hygiene and Sanitation Training
This community believes that good hygiene is impossible when impoverished. Hygiene and sanitation training will prove that hygiene can be a reality for anybody willing to try. Training will last for two days, and will teach students and staff how to:
- Increase access to safe, clean and adequate water
- Improve access to sound sanitation facilities
- Empower the great community to practice good personal hygiene and maintain environmental health
The facilitator will use PHAST (participatory hygiene and sanitation transformation), ABCD (asset-based community development), CTC (child to child), lectures, group discussions, and handouts to teach health topics and ways to promote good practices within the school. The CTC method will prepare students to lead other students into healthy habits, as well as kickstart a CTC club for the school.
Secondary School Principal Nixon Sabwa admits, "Our community needs concerted effort to prevent the spread of communicable diseases. Any support in terms of trainings and water provision will go a long way in improving health."
Plans: Rainwater Catchment Tank
A 30,000-liter rainwater catchment tank will be constructed on school grounds. Teachers, students, and parents will gather the local materials needed for this project, including sand, ballast, bricks, and hardcore. This contribution will fuel a sense of responsibility for the school and community to take care of their new facilities. Once materials are mobilized, the WEWASAFO team will arrive to lead the construction effort.
Plans: VIP Latrines
Two triple-door latrines will be constructed, providing three new latrines for each gender. Latrine materials will be mobilized the same way as the tank, ensuring the school feels these facilities are truly theirs.
Plans: Hand-Washing Stations
Two hand-washing stations will be delivered to the school before training. These come in the form of two 60-liter containers fitted with a tap. The training facilitator will demonstrate how to properly wash hands, and then students will have a chance to practice in groups. The CTC club will be responsible for filling the hand-washing containers on a daily basis.