Sep 8, 2020

Project Report

Community Sensitisation Meeting in Progress
Community Sensitisation Meeting in Progress

Dear Maji changemaker,

This is an update on the noteworthy progress we have made with the Fathers & Kids Camping impact project to bring sustainable access to safe water and sanitation to three schools in the neighboring communities of Mutwamaki, Ulutya and Kavwea in Machakos County, rural Kenya.

In the midst of the COVID-19 outbreak, implementing our joint plans to ensure safe water and sanitation for the selected communities was nothing short of an uphill battle. Yet, we navigated partial and/or complete lockdowns, mobility restrictions and the very real threat to the safety of our teams, to open the taps as soon as possible.

Project Update

We are pleased to inform you that clean water is now flowing across all three sites and toilets have been installed. We have followed our standard procedure for the implementation of this project and successfully concluded the following key steps:

  1. Hydrogeological assessment and water quality testing against WHO standards
  2. Community sensitization meetings
  3. Community and local government approval obtained
  4. Manufacturing and shipping equipment
  5. Community baseline surveys
  6. Site Installation
  7. Finally, we have completed the installation of toilets for all sites.

In a matter of days, the community WASH trainings and E-payment introduction trainings will take place and with that milestone, the water kiosks will be officially handed over to the community. Next, we will continue to monitor the functionality and performance of our sites and have scheduled maintenance visits.

Impact Measurement

As part of our baseline survey protocol, results from our pre-impact questionnaires revealed that:

  • 62% of the local communities were unsatisfied with the current water source
  • Average time spent on water walks each day is 57 minutes per day per collection
  • 22.4% reported routinely falling sick from water-borne Illnesses

At Project Maji, we take impact measurement seriously and measure progress periodically. Therefore, the same key variables will be measured under post-Impact surveys that will be conducted 6- and 12-months post-Intervention, and annually thereafter.

Impact Created

As of Mid-August 2020, the following consumption and Impact trends have emerged from each of the selected communities:

Total no. of litres pumped

Mutwamaki - 192,400 litres

Kavwea - 100,800 litres

Ulutya - 137,600 litres

Total no. of people impacted

Mutwamaki - 2,020 people

Kavwea - 1,550 people

Ulutya - 3,000 people

Thank you for your support

We, at Project Maji, are grateful for your extraordinary support in the implementation of this project. More Importantly, the communities are very grateful for your initiative in unlocking a better future for them and truly transforming lives.

Equipment shipped to sites
Equipment shipped to sites
Kiosk structures completed
Kiosk structures completed
Toilets installed
Toilets installed
Jul 19, 2020

Project Report

Capacity-building approach adopted
Capacity-building approach adopted

This is an update on the COVID-19 Handwashing with Soap Training Project, currently being rolled out across rural Ghana. Till date, your support has helped us reach 12 communities, more than 2,000 household heads and 10,000 individuals with handwashing essentials and training.

In the early days of the outbreak, country-wide lockdown, social distancing restrictions and the safety of our teams made it increasingly difficult for us to deliver the trainings. Yet, recognizing the urgency of the situation, we continued working behind the scenes. Actively fundraising online and rallying support for the cause, we managed to create valuable partnerships to raise our impact. As soon as the lockdown eased across Ghana, we mobilized our teams on the ground to deliver practical handwashing training along with bars of soap.

Capacity-Building Approach 

Naturally, our field operations have been altered keeping in mind the very real and enduring threat posed by COVID-19. In the past, our field teams engaged with large groups of people, trying to reach as many as possible with our community WASH trainings. We now target household heads with hygiene and handwashing trainings. To abide by social distancing requirements, Participation participation is restricted to 50 community members in each village, who are trained in groups of 5. Following a capacity-building approach, we train them to transfer their learning to their respective households and encourage handwashing for effective prevention against the virus.  

Female Participation 

The Project Maji handwashing trainings are essentially focused on teaching key steps to proper handwashing. The 30-minute training is designed in line with a participatory approach whereby our trainers employ colorful visual aids and encourage questions and comments to keep the participants engaged. Participants are also encouraged to volunteer step by step demonstrations of hand washing by the end of each session. 

More importantly, we have consulted WASH literature to design the most effective response to curb the spread of the virus. Studies show that while women are disproportionately disadvantaged during pandemics, their involvement in water projects, community hygiene and WASH trainings have proven to render these projects 6 to 7 times more effective. Therefore, we have placed community women at the heart of our COVID-19 response. Our field teams are instructed to target women rather than men for our soap distribution drive and female representation from each household is highly encouraged. 

Innovation in Action – The Maji Bucket 

We recognize that innovation is an indispensable ingredient for an effective COVID-19 response. The Maji bucket- a zero-touch handwashing station is a testament to that. It is a low-tech innovation, designed to be assembled locally and cheaply. The foot-operated bucket eliminates the need to touch potentially infected taps with newly cleaned hands and serves as a transformative tool in virus prevention. We believe in outsourcing the Maji bucket for greater social good and our field teams are ready to assist and train household heads to assemble their own buckets.  

Our work has to go on 

Latest research has revealed that the Coronavirus can could claim up to 3.3 million African lives and cause 122 million infections in the region. This is why we cannot stand still. Our timely intervention can curb virus transmission and save thousands of lives. We need your support to reach more communities with supplies of the Maji bucket, handwashing training and bars of soap.

Join us to save lives: https://www.globalgiving.org/projects/water-for-hand-washing/ 

Female-focused soap distribution drive
Female-focused soap distribution drive
Female participation encouraged during trainings
Female participation encouraged during trainings
Navigating social distancing restrictions
Navigating social distancing restrictions
Zero-touch Maji Bucket
Zero-touch Maji Bucket

Links:

May 26, 2020

Project Report

Our team member handing over a bar of soap
Our team member handing over a bar of soap

In light of the COVID19 pandemic, access to clean water and handwashing has gained a new value altogether. Your support in providing this basic human right has now, more than ever, been proven to be a life-saving investment.

Against the backdrop of a COVID-19 outbreak now taking its grip in Africa, we recognize our responsibility to ensure rural communities across Ghana are equipped to shield themselves against the virus. Not only do we continue to provide sustainable access to clean water in Maji communities, we have ramped up our efforts to ensure hand hygiene in these communities. Since the onset of the pandemic, Project Maji has launched an aggressive handwashing and soap distribution campaign across rural Ghana, targeting 12 communities, 2,000 households and 10,000 people to help shield communities from the virus.

We are delighted to share that not only have we successfully reached our targets, we are now actively fundraising to double our impact, targeting another 12 communities, 2,000 households and 10,000 people. Hand hygiene is our frontline defense against the virus, therefore we recognize that our handwashing trainings and soap distribution are indispensable in preventing an outbreak. 

The Project Maji Community Handwashing trainings are essentially focused on teaching key steps to proper handwashing. The 30-minute training is designed in line with a participatory approach whereby our trainers employ colorful visual aids and encourage questions and comments to keep the participants engaged. Participants are also encouraged to volunteer step by step demonstrations of hand washing by the end of each session. Recognizing the urgent need for these trainings while ensuring the safety of our teams as well as the local communities, we have now adopted a capacity-building approach. Participation is restricted to a maximum of 50 community members who are trained in groups of 5 to pass on their learning on proper handwashing to their respective households and the wider community.

Due to mobility and social gathering restrictions and the very imminent threat posed by COVID-19, mobilizing our teams and rolling out these trainings has been nothing short of an uphill battle. Nonetheless, we recognize that our work not only has to go on, it has to intensify. We aim to continue to strive to find the right balance between raising hygiene awareness and ensuring the safety of Maji communities as well as our local teams. Click here to join us and save lives. 

We will keep you posted. Thank you for your overwhelming support in providing sustainable access to safe water through this project!

Ama Wilson - Ghana Team
Ama Wilson - Ghana Team
Participant engaging with trainers
Participant engaging with trainers
Training in process
Training in process
 
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