Children at the La Cumbre Elementary School actively participate in Pueblo a Pueblo’s WASH program all year around. But what about their parents?
Inspired by the trainings they received from Pueblo a Pueblo, teachers organized its first hygiene class for parents on the day before Mother’s Day and invited Pueblo a Pueblo to participate. Forty-one mothers packed into a school room to learn about topics such as proper hand washing techniques, the importance of personal hygiene and sending kids to school clean, healthy foods, values, and discipline. Three mothers chosen in advance to lead the discussion also talked about the importance of monitoring children’s free time in order to avoid problem behaviors such as drug and alcohol use. Three teachers, Gaspar Boron Icaj, Francisco Cutzal Pop, and Josefa Virginia Boron, also spoke, supporting the mothers’ messages and talking about the classification and reuse of waste. In honor of Mother’s Day, the eldest mothers in the group were given small gifts and asked to say a few words about important values to teach children, such as respect, responsibility, prudence, honesty, and cooperation.
Also in May, Pueblo a Pueblo made its first monitoring visit to the Tzan Chaj School to inspect the bathrooms and observe hygiene behaviors. Rosario Ixbalan, a fourth grade teacher and the school’s Environmental Committee representative, answered questions about the WASH project. “What most motivates me is that the students are practicing these behaviors,” she said. “They will remind each other when one of them forgets to wash their hands or brush their teeth and they even remind me when I forget to do our daily hygiene inspection.” Rosario added that she feels the steps for how to teach children to correctly brush their teeth has been the most helpful part of the WASH training she received from Pueblo a Pueblo.
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