This project will provide safe drinking water and improved hygiene to fifteen day care centers in Tiquipaya (Bolivia). We will train the educators of the day care centers on water and hygiene and how to implement simple solutions for saving lives. Water filters will be given to each center (one per class room) and portable hand washing facilities will be installed. We also will involve the kids' families in order to make sure the healthy habits promoted in this project will reach households.
Diarrhea is among the top three killers of children under five in Bolivia. It is caused by poor water quality and hygiene conditions. Young children are especially affected by the disease because their immune system is not fully developed and because their bodies dehydrate quickly. Many day care centers (like other educational institutions) lack access to safe drinking water. Whereas water generally is available, it often is not treated, thus increasing the risk for contracting diarrhea.
We will train educators of eighteen day care centers on key topics of water, hygiene and sanitation, focusing on simple solutions which can be implemented within a short time. We will install water filters in each class room so that children and educators can consume safe drinking water at all times. We also will train parents in order to facilitate behavior change at the household level. The project will directly improve health status of 730 children between one and six years of age.
Lowering diarrhea rates directly leads to improved survival rates and enhanced mental and physical development of children. Fewer cases of diarrhea also mean reduced medical expenses. Healthier settings at day care centers lead to increased attendance and create healthy habits which will last for a whole life, creating economic and health benefits which several times outweigh the costs of implementing a water and sanitation project.
Website of SODIS Foundation
Global reference site for Solar Water Disinfection
CNN video on a SODIS project in Kenya
SODIS Foundation wins Water for Life Award 2012