Our work with the Matsigenka people of Taykome continues with great success. In March of 2011, HOTC made a technical visit to the village to check in on how the people were maintaining their infrastructure that was built in 2009 -2010. Our visit was also to provide technical training to the water and sanitation committee and to reinforce health and hygiene education with the children and moms. Our team arrived to find the new infrastructure: water filtration system, tap stands, sink and bathrooms, in excellent working condition. The water and sanitation committee is assuming their responsibilities with continued enthusiasm. Microbiology water testing was conducted by our project supervisor and he confirmed that the slow sand filters were removing up to 99.99% of the bacteria from the water supply, and that the water is SAFE to drink.
We also made house-to-house visits with the village health promoter that HOTC trained in 2010. The health promoter is a young woman named Mircia, and she has been making monthly house-to-house visits to work with the mothers since December of 2010. She also works with the children on weekly maintenance of the bathroom structure at the schoolhouse. Mircia is soaring to new heights in her function as a health promoter in the village. We observed the tap stand at each home clean and hygienic, and the cleanliness in and around the circumference of the home is much improved. We also observed that daily hygiene practices among the children continue to transform, and basic hand washing is becoming second nature to them.
The experimental gardens that we planted in three village homes in November of 2010 continue to flourish. Families are having success growing scallions, cabbage, and tomatoes (to name a few) to supplement their yucca –fruit – fish and wild game based diet.
The water and sanitation committee received advanced technical training from our project supervisor in systems maintenance, repair and water quality and safety. One of the committee members shared with our supervisor how he made a shower connection at his home by what he learned from his training with HOTC. HOTC also met with the teachers and medical personnel to discuss the coordination of weekly health and hygiene classes for the children at the school. The teachers and medical personnel agreed that it was imperative to continue with the weekly classes that were set forth in partnership with HOTC in 2010. They remain committed to developing "good daily hygiene practices" among the children.
Our last order of business on the visit was a community meeting. HOTC's Project Supervisor congratulated all the villagers on their progress. He presented the results of the water analysis taken at each home to its family members, so that they could see for themselves that the water was SAFE. The community leaders talked with the participants about establishing a monthly usage fee for the water and sanitation system from each family. They could not reach a final decision that day, however they agreed to address the topic on the next supervision visit with HOTC.
HOTC is extremely pleased with the accomplishments of the people and their willingness to continue to work towards long term health advances for themselves and their children. However, we have more to accomplish in Tayakome and our focus is all about “Project Sustainability.” In July of 2011 our team will make a supervision visit to the village to do the following: 1. Ongoing technical training for the villagers and the water and sanitation committee in system maintenance, repair and water quality and safety. 2. Enter into phase two of our talks with community leaders to establish a water and sanitation fund that charges a monthly fee to each family. This fee will be used for the community to maintain the infrastructure. 3. Ongoing health and hygiene education for mothers and children in partnership with the village school teachers, health promoter, and medical personnel in residence at the health post.
***This educational portion of our programming is essential in order for long term health advances to be achieved by the people.
*** OUR GRATITUDE: HOTC would like to thank each one of you for the difference you make in the lives of the people we all serve through GlobalGiving. Together we are doing what has never been accomplished before, as we bring clean water, a dignified toilet and health education to the people in the remote Manu Rain Forest of Peru. We believe as each community reaches its goal, our work will branch out to serve as a multicultural global model to promote the preservation of tropical forest ecosystems and the health and cultural integrity of indigenous peoples in the Amazon. Thank you again for your ongoing support of the project. Please share our work with other friends and colleagues so that we can continue to provide basic human services to these beautiful Matsigenka people.
Sincerely yours in service,
It’s time once again to update you on our progress, as we work to improve the quality of life for the children and people of Tayakome, in the remote Amazon of Peru. There is more positive news to report! After 14 months of an intense construction schedule, the water and sanitation infrastructure are now in place and functioning for the people. House of the Children now enters into Phase II of our indigenous health programming.
Phase II Includes:
1. Technical training seminars for the village water and sanitation committee in system maintenance and water quality.
2. Establishment of a water fund by community leaders that charges a monthly fee to each family, for water use.
3. Health monitoring in Tayakome to document parasite and anemia levels in the population, in partnership with the health ministry medical personnel.
4. Health and hygiene classes for the children, mothers, and family, done in partnership with the village school teacher, health promoter, and medical personnel in residence.
This phase is the most crucial and guarantees long term health advances for the children and people and, equally important, project sustainability. Over 50% of all water projects fail in the first 5 years globally because health education and technical training in system management is not reinforced long term.
HOTC maintains bi-monthly contact with the president of Tayakome to monitor how the children and people are doing assuming their maintenance responsibilities of the structures. The president reports that the gravity flow water system (installed in 09) and the bathrooms (installed in 2010) are well maintained, hygienic, and in working order.
Health education continues with the children. The nurse from the health post conducts weekly hygiene classes for the children in partnership with the teacher. A health promoter from the village, who is a young Matsigenka mother, also conducts a weekly maintenance class that reinforces cleanliness of the bathrooms and basic hand washing with the children. This promoter also makes monthly house-to-house visits to connect with the mothers and reinforce maintenance of the tap stand and basic daily hygiene at the family level. The nurse, medical personnel, and the health promoter were trained by HOTC staff over the nine months our team was in residence in Tayakome in 2010.
Our project supervisor Caleb Matos Chavez will make a ten day visit to the community at the end of March 2011 to check – in and conduct a three day technical training seminar with the water and sanitation committee and villagers, and a day long training with the nurse, doctor and health promoter. He will also make a complete review of the infrastructure. In June of 2011 our health supervisor will enter to conduct our yearly parasite and anemia study to monitor the health of the people, now that these basic health services are in place.
Our accomplishments continue to be many, and made possible through your ongoing support of our work through the GlobalGiving Network. We thank each and every one of you for the difference you make in bettering the lives of these beautiful Matsigenka people, who were all but forgotten by their government. Each village we complete brings us closer to a world where all children and people have their basic human needs of clean water, a dignified toilet and health education realized. As we help the indigenous children and people of Manu, we provide hope and inspiration to the 10’s of thousands of remote indigenous rainforest peoples globally. Word is spreading—that the Matsigenka are making the impossible, possible in Manu.
We are confident that one day, in the not too distant future, the basic human needs of all peoples will be met!
Thank you again for your continued generosity and friendship you extend to the people we serve. We will keep you updated on our advances as we continue to promote health and well being with the indigenous children and people of Tayakome.
We have wonderful news! The bathrooms at the village schoolhouse in Tayakome are completed! After six months of construction in this remote rainforest village, the eco-friendly structure was inaugurated on November 19, 2010. All of the children and community members were present for the ceremony. Festivities included: the breaking of champagne on the structure, talks by HOTC's executive staff and Tayakome's president, and a delicious lunch of fish and wild pig prepared by the village mothers. It was a fun filled day for all!
This is the first time in the 47 year history of the community that basic human services of clean water, sanitation and culturally appropriate health education have been implemented for the children and people.
All of these accomplishments would not have been made possible without your ongoing support of our work. We sincerely thank each and every one of you for the difference you have made to better the lives of these beautiful Matsigenka people. As you can see from the photos and videos posted here on our Update—we’re making great strides with the people.
However, our work does not stop here now that the infrastructure is in place. We will follow through with three years of ongoing health monitoring and hygiene education for the children, moms and the community members and technical training for the village water and sanitation committee. This phase of our programming is the most crucial, and guarantees long term health advances for the children and project sustainability over the long term for the people.
We look forward to your ongoing support of our work through the GlobalGiving network. We will keep you updated on our advances as we continue to promote health and well being in union with the indigenous children and people of the Manu rainforest of Peru.
We wish you all the Happiest of Holidays,
House of the Children
Our work with Project Tayakome continues to advance! The construction of the eco-friendly bathrooms and septic system has been underway since June 18th, 2010. Our crew, the villagers and the children work steadfast to achieve the completion goal of October 31, 2010. Sixty percent of the structure has now been built.
This remote Matsigenka village will be the first village, inside the protected zone of the Manu National Park, to have an integral health system that advances the health of the children for generations to come. This integral system includes: clean H2O flowing to tap stands at 15 homes, the schoolhouse and the medical post, separate boys and girls bathrooms at the school, and health education that reinforces daily hygiene practices.
It has been inspiring to witness the willingness of the people and the children that participate daily in whatever work needs to be done. The ongoing dedication of our HOTC construction staff to live long periods of time away from their families is profound as well. Our crew and the people of the village are able to transcend the distance, intense heat, physically challenging work, and the constant irritation of mosquitoes to live as one global family with a common goal.
It is through your past support that all of our advances have been made possible. We are in need of funding to complete the bathrooms, and continue with our health education and capacity training of the water committee through the end of the year. We humbly ask for your continued financial support of Project Tayakome. Together through our human kindness and GLOBALGIVING we are making our world a better place for all humanity.
Thank you for your support.
In deep gratitude,
PROJECT TAYAKOME UPDATE: It has been an AMAZING time for all of us here in the remote Amazon of Peru, in service to the indigenous people in our Project Tayakome. Our happy news to report is that the children and people are incorporating their clean water system and tap stand built in 2009, beautifully, into everyday life. After years of failed programming by governmental agencies, the people now have direct experience that an outside organization honors and fulfills their commitments to them. The people have learned through their hard work in building their infrastructure that they are the change and the future of their community.
THE FLOW OF CLEAN H2O: Clean H2O continues to flow to each home, the village schoolhouse, and the medical post. The kids adapted instantly, and they especially love their stone utility sink at the school. The tap stands are clean and hygienic, and we are very encouraged at how quickly the women and children embraced simple maintenance practices of them.
The village water committee, which was trained over 5 months by our project supervisor in 2009, have taken on their new responsibility of maintaining the water system with great enthusiasm.
WHAT'S NEXT! We are in the throws of building eco-friendly bathrooms for the children at the schoolhouse. The preliminary work of purchasing the construction materials, gathering over 30,000 kilos of rock and sand for the structure, and building the native roof that covers the structure has been underway since May 1st. Our river boats have been working non-stop as well, transporting all the material 3 days on the river to the village. We officially break ground to start the actual building of the structures on June 17, 2010. Construction is scheduled will last through September 2010.
YOUR CONTINUED SUPPORT: Our success in Tayakome simply would not be possible without the support of each and everyone of you through our GlobalGiving partnership. We are creating the first ever replicable indigenous health project for remote rain forest people in the southeastern Amazon of Peru. Our 8 member staff of House of the Children are among the chosen few of billions of people on the planet that are allowed inside this strictly protected rain forest in service of her people.
We have raised over 10K through GlobalGiving since June of 2009. However, we still have more to accomplish together. We are in need of additional funds to meet our current schedule. We would be grateful for your continued support of our work in empowering indigenous the children and people of this most sacred rain forest for generations to come. Many thanks and continued blessings to you all!
Through sharing our abundance, we transform our world.
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