In Dolakha, a place severely affected by earthquake of 2015, the reconstruction and renovation activities are still going on. Residents of Dolakha are struggling on a daily basis to rebuild their homes and continue their livehood simultaneoulsy. In such scenario, prioritizing reconstruction of school based facilities and WASH (water, sanitation and hygiene) status is a difficult issue.
To bring positive change in WASH status and health of school children in Namdu, Dolakha, ECCA had been delivering different interventions. From carpeting program to providing sanitation kits to school students, schools were also supported to build safe drinking water and sanitation facilities (repair and construction of toilet, construction of handwashing station, construction of drinking water station, etc.)
Around 1016 students of eight schools and one Child Development Centre (ECD) have been benefitted by the support.
"With the construction of water storage tank and drinking water station, which is child friendly as well, our students of all ages have access to drinking water now at school", says Principal of Baiteshwor Secondary School.
Students traveling from far are also now motivated to regularly attend school and stay at the school full time. Provision of drinking water and proper toilet in the school has helped to provide quality education and healthy environment for children of Namdu village.
We are really thankful for your support in helping us improve health and school environment in Namdu village. We expect to help more schools to improve their school environment.
With the completion of sanitation kit distribution program, project schools of Namdu village have now entered into next phase (that is, construction of infrastructure related with WASH (water, sanitation and hygiene)). As discussed and decided during the Stakeholders Visioning Workshop held in January, the schools are being supported for the repair and construction of toilet, handwashing station, drinking water station etc.
"Our major problem had been drinking water", says Principal of Baiteshwor Secondary School. "We could not afford proper water storage tank for our students and it was really hard for them. Now that both water storage tank and drinking water station are being constructed by ECCA, our students are really happy."
Similar is the story of other schools. Students have to walk between 1 to 3 hours daily to come to the school and lack of drinking water and proper toilet in the school had been a real difficulty (especially for girl students). So, constructing WASH infrastructure is not just a school development approach but it also acts as an encouragement for students to attend school regularly.
The construction work is going on at present, and will benefit hundreds of students upon its completion.
We are really thankful for your support in helping us improve health and school environment in Namdu village.
In response to the need of hygiene kit support discussed during Stakeholders Visioning Workshop of January 2017, sanitation kits were supported to project schools of Namdu, Dolakha on May 30, 2017. Ms. Rachel Smith, Director of Programmes and Operations of GlobalGiving UK also attended the orientation and distribution program in Namdu village.
Sanitation kit is a wholesome package comprising of basic items required for personal hygiene (such as nail cutter, soap, comb, etc.) which is meant to help students of rural villages in a daily basis. The purpose of distributing this sanitation kit was also to make the children (and their parents) aware on the need to use such items regularly in their daily life. Considering the age group of students, 7 project schools having grade 2 and above were selected. But before distribution of sanitation kits, Sanitation Orientation Program was conducted for nature club representatives and one focal teacher from each school. 76 participants attended. This orientation focused on proper use of items included in the sanitation kit and on improving personal hygiene. Sessions were also held on safe drinking water techniques, sanitation, waste management and personal hygiene issues. More importantly, role of school club and teachers in maintaining good school environment was prioritized.
“We knew many things but we were not able to include them in our behavior” said Soniya, one of the students from Shree Busti Secondary School. “We will work along with teachers to bring positive behaviorial changes in our school.”
The oriented students/ child club representatives will share their knowledge with other friends in school, which includes providing instruction on proper use of items included in the sanitation kit and role of school club / school committee in ensuring its proper use. Distribution was carried out for the students from Grade 2 to 10, once the trainees conducted the orientation program in their respective schools.
“The kit is a huge support for our students”, said one of the teachers. “Thank you so much for the support.”
And, we thank you for your donation, which helped to make the program possible.
After the earthquake, temporary classrooms were constructed. But, there is no sitting facility in these classrooms. The students were required to sit on the cold floor, which made them sick. These small children do not want to attend class (as they have to sit on the cold floor). Carpet and foam were laid on the floor (to stop cold to penetrate from the floor) and cushion were provided for the students to sit. 17 classrooms (ECD and class 1) of 8 government schools and 1 community based Early Childhood Development Centre were provided with foams, carpets and 250 cushions plus 90 long mattress. The work was completed in January, before the winter got severe.
ECCA organized 3 days “School Stakeholders Visioning Workshop” from 14 – 16 January, 2017. The target groups for the training were stakeholders of all project schools - School Management Committee representatives, Parent Teacher Association, principals, teachers and local leaders. There were altogether 18 participants from eight government schools, including resource person and one Namdu Village Development Committee (VDC) representative (Sima Lama). Mr. Narayan Kaji Kashichawa, District Education Officer also facilitated the program.
The workshop focused on envisioning of common goal and strategy development under the issues of WASH, as well as overall School Environment Improvement (while making stakeholders aware about their roles and responsibilities at the same time). By analyzing current status of schools, each school was encouraged to develop enforceable WASH based visioning statement. Most schools have shared issues of drinking water, sanitation corners and proper toilets. Combating challenges related to WASH, such as increasing dropout rate of students due to lack of girl/child friendly WASH infrastructure and lack of positive behaviourial attitude are the priorities to which ECCA aims to provide support.
Current activities of ECCA include co-ordinating with school stakeholders for WASH infrastructure construction. In addition, preparation work for sanitation / hygiene kits distribution is going on, to improve hygiene behavior among school children.
We thank GlobalGiving and Big Lottery Fund for the support.
Warmer learning environment in schools
DEO facilitating a session on 'Stakeholders' roles in School Improvement' on 3rd day
Even after one and half years of earthquake, many Nepalese people are still facing its effects and are adapting to the situations which changed their life, home, thoughts and has brought a new vibe of helping, uniting, supporting and many warm thoughts to smile. Namdu, a remote village lying about 72 kilometers north from Kathmandu, still struggles the scars of earthquake. In Namdu, there are still many open parts which need to be patched.
On November 22–24, 2016, WASH related baseline survey was conducted in 8 schools of Namdu, where the ECCA counselors obtained details of school and the students’ behavior regarding WASH. The condition of school is very delicate; students, teachers and community members are still facing the difficulties brought by the earthquake.
The survey shows that the students have some knowledge about hygiene but they have not practiced it in their behavior. Students are still required to study in temporary classrooms, facing the cold weather and studying on the cold floor. In some schools, the students are still studying in damaged buildings. Toilets bear the notice “Not safe” but are still being used. Most of the people lack detail knowledge on personal health, sanitation, safe drinking water and use of toilet. Students and teachers drink untreated water. Schools do not have a proper hand washing station neither soap. Students do not have access of water in school (to drink or to flush in the toilet).
Even after knowing the situation, the school management and the community members are neglecting the WASH sector. Thus, an attempt to bring improvement in the WASH sector has been initiated by ECCA, with the support from GlobalGiving UK and Big Lottery Fund. Having the knowledge is not enough. One should practice it in their daily life. We aim to bring positive changes in the lives of people of Namdu, by starting from the schools.
We thank GlobalGiving UK and Big Lottery Fund for the support.
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