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Dec 19, 2018

Hygiene Clubs at Biruh Tesfa Primary School

Splash has recently conducted hygiene education at Biruh Tesfa Primary School. After two days of specialized training by Splash hygiene trainers, we also helped facilitate the formation of the student hygiene club and the sub-cabinets associated with the club, responsible for various aspects of student hygiene and school cleanliness.

As a result of these efforts, this month, we met three powerful student leaders while they were facilitating lunch-time handwashing activities – Mekdes, Yordanos, and Netsanet. Each are student hygiene ambassadors who have been instrumental in leading the development of their club structure. These powerful young leaders have been chosen by their peers to manage the water sub-division of the club. They are determined and proud about what they are doing. “Our role is different. We keep students in order during lunch and other school break times when they use the water stations and the bathroom. We also have the opportunity to run mass education projects, through mini-media and class-to-class education.”

Yordanos is the secretary of the student hygiene club. In her role, she calls student ambassadors for regular monthly meetings and goes class-to-class to alert students about their meetings and corresponding assignments, as well as reminds her fellow hygiene club members about upcoming ambassador sub-committees. “Every day I have something to do apart from school work and I am so happy about that. Teachers give me their appreciation when they see me for keeping students in order during break time.” These ‘water stars’ shared that they are happier in school after they joined the hygiene club and became ambassadors because the adults in the school view them as unique. Yordanos mentioned that, “The school principal now meets with us twice a month to discuss challenges and opportunities within the school.”

We are thrilled to make a difference in these girls’ lives and the lives of 1,377 kids and adults at the school. Later this month, sanitation rehabilitation work will begin at the schools. 

Oct 12, 2018

Namaste

Thanks to a summer campaign hosted by Omstars, MiiR, yoga star Kino McGregor, and 8,823 compassionate yogis who participated in the #HandstandMechanicsChallenge, Splash will ensure clean water flows from taps, kids are washing their hands with soap, and that students have access to safe and sanitary restrooms at two schools in one of the biggest, toughest cities on the planet – Kolkata, India. We will dramatically improve the water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH) conditions for over 300 kids, thereby enhancing their dignity, health, and educational success!

Bastuhara Vidyapith Primary School and Jnanendu Siksha Niketan High School share a campus in Kolkata’s Tangra neighborhood. Tangra is being rapidly transformed by population growth and construction. The number of high-rises has increased and as a result, the property prices in this area are quite high, resulting in pockets of slums in between high-rise towers where many of the students live. The school campus is situated close to the Dhapa landfill – the biggest dump in the city, which operates at unsustainable rates today.

Both Bastuhara Vidyapith and Jnanendu Siksha Niketan lack adequate infrastructure to provide their students with clean water, clean hands, and clean toilets. While water is widely available at school, it is typically contaminated with e. Coli and other water-borne illnesses. In a 2015 independent citywide survey of 1,650 government schools in Kolkata, Splash discovered:

  • 95% of Kolkata’s public schools had access to water
  • 94% of schools lacked soap for handwashing
  • 33% of toilets had no water for flushing
  • 35% of toilets had no door or lock for privacy

To combat these alarming figures, Splash has developed an innovative WASH-in-Schools model that includes: 

  1. Installing the enabling infrastructure, including water filtration, water storage to ensure access, handwashing and drinking water stations, and child-friendly sanitation facilities.  
  2. Delivering behavior change programmes for children and adults. This includes training focal teachers through an engaging, activity-based curriculum and supporting them to instruct student hygiene clubs on how to engage their peers in positive behaviours such as handwashing.  
  3. Creating a WASH ecosystem to ensure programme sustainability. This includes co-investment from schools and government, operations and maintenance training for school janitorial staff, school incentives through recognition programs, engaging parents through soap drives, and building local supply chains to ensure availability of spare parts and repair services. 
  4. Conducting routine monitoring and evaluation of project sites. To ensure continuous learning and program improvement, Splash conducts pre and post-intervention assessments at each school, followed by five years of routine monitoring, twice per year.

Because of companies like MiiR, members of the Global Giving community, and all the caring, kind, and motivated yogis out there, together, we will be able to help hundreds of more kids stay healthy, excel in school, and unlock their full potential. With your support, kids at schools like Bastuhara Vidyapith and Jnanendu Siksha Niketan can thrive! We've already reached 10% of government schools in Kolkata, and are on track to reach 100% full coverage by 2023, we hope you will join us on this journey.

Links:

Sep 25, 2018

Safe H2O for one of the largest schools in Africa

Current drinking stations at Abado Primary
Current drinking stations at Abado Primary

We have an opportunity to help make sure clean water flows from taps, kids are washing their hands with soap, and that students have access to safe and sanitary restrooms at one of the biggest, and toughest, schools on the planet! With a student population tipping the scales at 6,251 kids, Abado Kindergarten and Primary school has the largest student population in Ethiopia and is believed to be the second most populated school in all of Africa!

The students come from diverse backgrounds with immigrants from Eritrea, South Sudan, Gambelia, and the Democratic Republic of Congo. Abado is located in the northeast suburbs of Addis Ababa, Ethiopia in one of the largest and most populous districts of Addis Ababa - Yeka. The neighborhood is being rapidly transformed by population growth and construction. It is estimated that over 80% of Addis’ population lives in slum districts with poor infrastructure and very limited access to adequate water and sanitation.

The school itself is extremely crowded and lacks adequate infrastructure to provide kids with clean water, clean hands, and clean toilets. Due to severe water shortages in Ethiopia, there are time periods where the school will only have access to running water one day a week! This makes keeping the bathrooms clean and sanitary difficult, and handwashing after using the toilets nearly impossible.

When you donate to Splash, you'll be helping kids at schools like Abado thrive. We've already reached almost 16% of government schools in Addis Ababa, and we need your help to reach 100% by 2023! With your support, we can help students stay healthy, excel in school, and unlock their full potential. Will you join us on this journey?

Current toilet stalls at Abado Primary
Current toilet stalls at Abado Primary
 
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