Charlie 3 – Water and sanitation

7th March 2014

laying water pipes

Charlie 3 are now in our third week in Mgongo and continuing to gain momentum with our project.  Action research has been coming to an end and we have been focussing on awareness raising and peer education.  Our action research has shown us some of the challenges that Mgongo faces, for example on average each household has to travel 120 minutes to fetch water every day, and even then it is not clean.  Diarrhoea, worms and malaria are also prevalent in Mgongo.  These results showed us how important our construction work is and also our awareness raising and peer education.

Our construction is going well and we really love getting stuck in with the locals.  Water pipes have been laid and we have filled in some of the trenches.  It is so encouraging and satisfying to see the visible signs of our work, and being one step closer to bringing water to Mgongo.

laying water pipes

construction

Our awareness raising is also now in full swing.  We held a community action day on Saturday which we all enjoyed and got great feedback from.  Our focus was on preventing the spread of diseases and the day included a tippy tap demonstration, a presentation on boiling water and a drama based on the importance of washing hands.  We are always so pleasantly surprised by how well received we are and the day was excellent!  Even some questionable acting skills in the drama went down very well!

We have run some successful and fun awareness raising sessions in some of our local schools.  The boys of Charlie 3 rose to the challenge of keeping a class of 85 children focussed and interested, doing a fantastic job.

awareness raising in school

We also ran a session on hand washing and boiling water to the maternity staff at our local hospital and have plans to deliver more sessions.

The girls of Charlie 3 met with the lovely ladies of ‘Mgongo women’s group’ to kick off our peer education.  We did some health and water based surveys with them and discussed our plans for International Women’s Day.  We will be putting on an event with the women, covering gender equality and health and sanitation issues that affect women in Mgongo.

We are beginning to see positive change and visible results with our water and sanitation project, both with construction and all our awareness raising based activities.  Our action research continues to inform everything we do and has integrated well with the community.  We all feel so welcomed and at home here in Mgongo.  As we move ever closer to our halfway point we are continually looking for new and innovative ways to communicate with the community, improve access to water and deal with health and sanitation issues here in our village.