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
Tulon Secondary School was founded in 1999 by community members and their local church, which donated land for the school buildings. Since then, the school has opened a boarding section for students who come from villages too far for a daily walk. The school currently has a population of 565 students. They employ 23 teachers, three cooks, three security guards, one secretary, one accountant, one driver, one storekeeper, a technician, groundsman, and matron.
This school is three hours away from our office, but it has not deterred us from addressing the need here.
There is a hand-dug well, but administration tells us that there are months every year that it runs dry. "Sometimes when the level of water goes down, students are forced to invade the neighboring villages in search of water, which leads to conflict and enmity between the school and the villagers. Though we try our best to ensure that the students get water within the school, problem of storage also arises as we only have two plastic tanks of 10,000 liters each, which cannot fully support the whole population." This water shortage is especially difficult for the boarding students who need water for drinking, cooking, cleaning, and bathing.
It was also plain to see that the parts used for the pump are of poor quality, and are rusting so badly that they now contaminate the water. Even more bad news came to light when The Water Project's program director paid a personal visit to Tulon; he found the pit latrines just a few strides from the well!
Our visit not only revealed the water scarcity here, but poor hygiene and sanitation too. The latrines there aren't enough for the student enrollment, nor are there any hand-washing stations. Well, the teachers have a hand-washing station that the students aren't allowed to use.
Plans: Hygiene and Sanitation Training and Hand-Washing Stations
Training will be held for two days. 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. This CTC club will oversee the new facilities, such as hand-washing stations, and make sure they are kept clean and in working condition. The two hand-washing stations will be delivered to the school, and the club will fill them with water on a daily basis and make sure there is always a cleaning agent such as soap or ash.
Plans: Rainwater Catchment Tank
A 50,000-liter rainwater catchment tank will be constructed on school grounds. Teachers, students, and parents will gather the 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.
With adequate clean water, the school will have water for drinking, cooking, cleaning, and hand-washing. The school will no longer have to worry about their unreliable contaminated water well - its water could just be used for cleaning, while clean water from the tank would be used for drinking and cooking.
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. And with a rainwater catchment tank nearby, there will be enough water to keep them clean.